The Los Angeles Dodgers enter the 2022 season as the favorite to win the NL West and vie for the World Series. Star shortstop Trea Turner will play a significant part in that equation, but he remains without a new deal.
Turner is potentially headed toward free agency next offseason, which the Dodgers could avoid that hassle. However, the All-Star revealed the status of his extension talks before Opening Day.
Dodgers retool for another World Series push
After falling short of the World Series, the Dodgers retooled their roster.
Los Angeles expectedly lost Corey Seager and Kenly Jansen in free agency but brought in proven commodities to reignite their championship push. The front office landed star first baseman Freddie Freeman on a six-year, $162 million deal while acquiring closer Craig Kimbrel to stabilize the backend of the bullpen.
However, the Dodgers have left the matter concerning their star infielder’s contract unresolved.
Trea Turner reveals no progress toward contract extension with the Dodgers
As Opening Day inches closer, the Dodgers are gearing up for a strong push toward World Series contention.
Before the organization gets underway, the team has the lingering matter concerning star infielder Trea Turner’s contract situation. The 28-year-old is entering the 2022 season on a one-year deal worth $21 million that he settled on with the Dodgers after avoiding arbitration last month.
Despite Turner voicing at the start of spring training that he would be open to staying for the long haul, he revealed that Los Angeles hasn’t engaged in extension talks.
“It’s like I talked about before, [I’m open to] having talks if they want to have them and if not, let’s go play baseball,” Turner said via The LA Times. “So no talks, no nothing. We’re ready to go play.”
The eighth-year infielder is more than willing to have those discussions, but he doesn’t want that dialogue to bleed into the upcoming season. The Dodgers’ hesitance to work out a new deal now is interesting as it shows the team wants to see how Turner plays with a full season under his belt.
He’s coming off his best campaign, earning the NFL batting title after hitting .328 while finishing fifth in voting for the NL MVP award behind setting career highs with 28 home runs and 77 RBI. Turner will have the opportunity to replicate those numbers in 2022 as the Dodgers’ full-time shortstop after Corey Seager’s departure.
He will have the chance to put up a strong year at the plate in the No. 3 spot in the lineup batting behind former MVPs Mookie Betts and Freddie Freeman. All that is shaping up nicely for Turner in his prove-it campaign.
Golden opportunity to earn a massive contract in LA or elsewhere
The Dodgers are keeping their options open, but Turner has everything to gain in 2022.
Since joining Los Angeles as part of the blockbuster trade alongside Max Scherzer last season, he’s fit nicely into the fold. His speed on the base paths and hitting have provided another boost to contend for an eighth World Series title.
The only potential concern cropped up in last year’s playoffs as he struggled to find consistency at the plate. In 12 games, he held a triple slash of .216/.245/.255 with two RBI, 12 strikeouts, and one stolen base. Turner wasn’t the dynamic factor he showcased in 52 regular-season games with the Dodgers, holding a triple slash of .338/.385/.565 with 10 home runs, 28 RBI, and 11 stolen bases.
The Dodgers need him to step up in postseason action to feel comfortable giving him a lofty contract, as that is where the organization plans to be every season. Time will tell, but Turner is heading into the most promising spot of his career.
Contract figures courtesy of Spotrac.