Tuesday, December 19, 2017

Welcome Back to LA, Matt Kemp! (For However Long You Stay)

I always though we'd see Matt Kemp in Dodger Blue again.

I just didn't think it would happen this quickly.

Welcome back, Matt Kemp!

As you all know, the ballplayer once heralded as our franchise outfielder has returned to Los Angeles. How long he'll be here is still up in the air. All we do know is that this trade cleared some bad debt off the books -- by trading a package of albatross contracts for Matt Kemp's giant whale of a bad contract.

In other words, this deal really had nothing to do with Baseball. Instead, it was a trade of financial instruments.

Of course, there was one exception. Going to the Braves, along with those bad contracts, is super utility man Charlie Culberson. So, our price for luxury tax/debt flexibility was Charlie.

Now, we have Matt Kemp in the house, and it has me wondering if we should actually expect him at Camelback Ranch this Spring, or is he destined for the trade block (or released). Per Jeff Todd at MLB Trade Rumors:
Indeed, per Heyman, “the trade market for Kemp is believed to be virtually nonexistent at the moment.” That’s hardly surprising, of course. Atlanta no doubt would have moved Kemp previously if there had been an opportunity. He’s worth nothing close to what’s left on his contract, which has been traded three times already. 
Still, we heard recently about the possibility of the Dodgers including prospects as an inducement to another organization to take over a portion of the Kemp deal. Just how much cash might move off the L.A. books would surely depend upon the quality of the prospect(s) up for the bidding, with any such deal potentially representing an interesting look at the market valuation of some young talent. 
Whether that sort of scenario might yet be in play is not yet clear, but it seems the Dodgers won’t be able to get much of a credit for the rights to Kemp himself. But that’s not to say that there’s no potential value left in the veteran slugger, who only just turned 33 years of year.
The consensus is that Kemp is not destined for LA at all. His inclusion in the trade is but a mere layover. We should probably expect something to happen before players start reporting for Spring Training next year.

On the other hand, Matt Kemp isn't exactly a washed-up ballplayer. Sure, he's proven to be injury prone. Still, the fellow can still mash, and if I had a choice between release or keeping him on the bench. I'd prefer to keep him in Blue.

In honor and respect I made two fantasy Baseball cards featuring Matt Kemp. Both cards show him in a Braves uniform.

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