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#pounditTuesday, January 31, 2023

Dodgers linked to 5-time All-Star slugger in free agency

Oct 11, 2022; Los Angeles, California, USA; Los Angeles Dodgers manager Dave Roberts (30) reacts during game one of the NLDS for the 2022 MLB Playoffs against the San Diego Padres at Dodger Stadium. The Dodgers defeated the Padres 5-3. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

After non-tendering multi-time All-Star Cody Bellinger this offseason, the Los Angeles Dodgers could be turning around and adding another one.

Sports Illustrated’s Pat Ragazzo reports Saturday that the Dodgers are showing interest in free agent slugger JD Martinez. Ragazzo notes that Martinez worked with Dodgers hitting coach Robert Van Scoyoc before.

Martinez, 35, spent the last five seasons on the Boston Red Sox. A five-time All-Star, he hit .274 with 16 homers and 62 RBIs in 2022. Martinez was also part of the Red Sox team that beat the Dodgers in the 2018 World Series.

Of course, Martinez, formerly an everyday outfielder, is now a permanent designated hitter, which is not the best for versatility purposes. Max Muncy figures to get a good amount of time at DH for the Dodgers next season, and they still need to find at-bats for young guys like Miguel Vargas and Gavin Lux. That is not even counting the possibility of the Dodgers bringing back Justin Turner, who made 61 starts at DH for them in 2022, in free agency.

Nevertheless, the righty-hitting Martinez could be a decent enough pivot for the Dodgers if they miss out on their top free agent targets this offseason.

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