The Dodgers deadline additions of Max Scherzer & Trea Turner were massive, and necessary
The Dodgers at the trade deadline acquired the best hitter available and the best pitcher available, all in one fell swoop.
During the run of eight straight NL West titles, the Dodgers trailed at the end of play on July 31 only twice — two games back in 2016, and a half-game back in 2018.
The latter was a three-team race that ultimately needed an extra day to decide, with the Dodgers beating the Rockies in Game 163.
“Obviously when we can get to July and have a comfortable lead in the west, and we can focus on levers to pull to help our playoff team, that’s ideal.
Turner at the time of the trade ranked sixth in the majors in position player Wins Above Replacement of any player traded, and 16th-most among all pitchers.
But adding Turner adds another premium hitter to the lineup, and gives the Dodgers a buffer in case of injuries and slumps, or in the case of Cody Bellinger and Gavin Lux at times, both.
The Dodgers in July had 57 starts and 262 plate appearances — 27 percent of all non-pitcher PA — from position players with an OPS of .607 or lower.
Scherzer brings stability to a Dodgers pitching staff that sorely needs it, especially with Clayton Kershaw still out with soreness in his left forearm/elbow and Tony Gonsolin now shelved with shoulder inflammation.