Dodgers: Now is the time to trade for Chris Archer; here’s how

ST. PETERSBURG, FL - AUGUST 22: Pitcher Chris Archer (Photo by Brian Blanco/Getty Images)
ST. PETERSBURG, FL - AUGUST 22: Pitcher Chris Archer (Photo by Brian Blanco/Getty Images) /

The Los Angeles Dodgers have a hole to fill behind Clayton Kershaw. Chris Archer is the perfect candidate and now is the time for the Dodgers to pull the trigger.

Chris Archer is no stranger to trade rumors and is a familiar topic here at LA Sports Hub. Just three weeks ago, we put together our proverbial “perfect trade package” to land Archer on the Dodgers. Then it was just speculation, just a dream scenario that would help the Dodgers tenfold. Now, that trade package has been tweaked and this dream could turn into reality.

Archer has been tossed around the MLB for quite some time now. Archer is entering his prime in the MLB with tremendous upside. On the right team in the right system, Archer can become a Cy Young finalist. What better place to do that than the Los Angeles Dodgers?

Archer’s numbers are not the most impressive on paper. Last season Archer had a 4.07 ERA with a 10-12 record and 249 strikeouts. His best year came in 2015 when he owned a 3.23 ERA and 252 strikeouts. Archer was named an all-star that season and finished fifth in Cy Young voting.

That is in the offensive heavy AL East. A move to the NL, in pitcher-friendly Dodger Stadium, would cause a natural dip in the ERA. With Rick Honeycutt leading the way, Archer could see himself become a consistent member of the sub-3.00 ERA club.

Despite the speculation, the Tampa Bay Rays have held onto their ace. However, that seemingly could all change this offseason. Tampa Bay has already set the rebuilding trend for this offseason and what better piece to bring in young talent than Chris Archer?

The trade that got this all moving? Sending Evan Longoria to the San Francisco Giants for a package headlined by infield prospect Christian Arroyo.

The Rays are in no place to contend anytime soon so a flash sale may be the organization’s best shot at maintaining some value. The Longer the Rays hold onto their trade chips the less the return will be. With four more years of team control, the Rays need to trade Archer soon to get a viable return.

Luckily for both sides, there is a trade package that accomplishes multiple objectives. This trade has been set up by the two team’s previous trades. For the Dodgers, it is the trade to acquire Matt Kemp. For the Rays, it is the trade that sent away Evan Longoria.

This trade on paper may be scary for those in love with the Dodgers’ farm system. Los Angeles would be giving up their second and third best prospects in this deal. Verdugo is the Dodgers best hitting prospect and is undoubtedly big league ready. Alvarez is a young pitching prospect who is also the 46th best prospect in baseball.

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If this was just for Archer this would be too much. However, in this deal, the Dodgers are flipping Kemp and his massive salary to open luxury cap space for the insane free agent class next season. With Archer only being owed $30.25 million over the next four years, this makes the Dodgers better now as well as keeping space for the 2018 class.

Verdugo has no place in the Dodgers crowded outfield. In Tampa Bay, Verdugo could play either left or right field and give the Rays a great young bat to hit second. Kemp may not have a big role on the Rays but at the very least could DH.

Kemp is still an above average hitter. Last season Kemp hit .276 with 19 home runs in 115 games played. Just two seasons ago the slugger hit 35 long bombs.

This is the perfect scenario that makes both teams better now and in the long run. The Rays can afford to pay the $43 million remaining on Kemp’s contract in return for the high ceiling of Verdugo and Alvarez. At the very worst the Dodgers can fork in $10 million or so or even take Denard Span and his $9 million owed this season.

Next: Longoria trade helps the Dodgers

These kind of perfect deals are very hard to come by. However, Andrew Friedman must begin exploring deals with his former team for Archer. If the Dodgers can land this exact deal, it may be the best trade Friedman’s ever pulled off.