The Los Angeles Dodgers are looking to move at least one outfielder ahead of the deadline, but don’t expect Matt Kemp to be the man on the trade block come next month. According to Fox Sports’ Ken Rosenthal, the most likely scenario would have Kemp being traded after the season rather than during.
Kemp’s potential to become trade bait seems to have diminished as his bat has heated up, but Rosenthal cautions us not to assume that Kemp’s return to form will automatically save him a spot in Los Angeles. It’s not the bat that is the issue for Kemp but the personality.
Kemp finally is getting hot, his disposition improving with his swing. Many in the industry, however, believe he ultimately will be moved — most likely in the offseason — due to his tempestuous relationship with some of his superiors.
As of now, Andre Either and Carl Crawford are the most likely Dodgers outfielders to be dangled in a deadline trade, but when the season ends the focus likely will shift to Kemp, as the Dodgers look to rework their outfield around young stars Yasiel Puig and Joc Pederson (the latter of whom is currently tearing up the PCL) while ridding themselves of Kemp’s ill temperament.
Coming off an offseason of injury questions, Kemp is currently hitting .275/.336/.463 with 7 HR and 28 RBI. His -2.1 dWAR is concerning, especially for a team that overall is a total mess defensively.