Jul 29, 2015 1:27 PM by NBC Sports
In the market for starting pitching help and always willing to take on some unwanted salary to get a deal done, the Dodgers have acquired right-hander Mat Latos, first baseman/outfielder Michael Morse, and a competitive balance draft pick from the Marlins for three minor leaguers.
Latos is the guy in this deal the Dodgers wanted. After a rough start to the season he’s turned things around with a 2.96 ERA and 43/9 K/BB ratio in his last seven starts. Latos has durability issues and seems to rub people the wrong way wherever he goes, but he’s a 27-year-old starter with a 3.43 career ERA and immediately upgrades the Dodgers’ rotation behind aces Clayton Kershaw and Zack Greinke
Morse is a potentially valuable player too, but the Dodgers have an All-Star first baseman in Adrian Gonzalez and a crowded outfield already, so his inclusion in the deal is mostly about the Marlins wanting to shed his $8 million salary for 2016. Morse signed a two-year, $16 million deal with Miami this offseason, but has hit just .214 with a .592 OPS in 52 games at age 33.
The value of the draft pick heading the Dodgers’ way shouldn’t be overlooked, because it’s basically a late first-round pick in the top 40 overall. A first-round pick going from a rebuilding team to a contending team doesn’t make a whole lot of sense, but then again it is the Marlins and the Dodgers are happy to buy something valuable that was handed out in the name of “competitive balance.”
No word yet on the three minor leaguers headed to the Marlins.