Only the Houston Astros won the World Series which means that 29 other MLB teams (including all 15 in the National League) have serious work to do.
Which National League teams need to take the next step this offseason? Let’s examine several teams that should make a big move to compete next season.
Let’s start with the NL East, where the Philadelphia Phillies just lost the World Series after upsetting the Atlanta Braves in the NLDS. The Braves are a team that needs to make a splash to solidify their chances next season. The New York Mets are still tough competition also. For the Braves, it looks like shortstop Dansby Swanson could be gone. They can upgrade on the fly with Trea Turner, who is one of the best free agents on the market or they could steal Jacob deGrom from the Mets.
Turner would put their lineup over the top while deGrom would give them the best rotation in baseball. If the Braves sign either player, they would instantly become favorites in the National League.
The Mets could also look to sign Turner and will need to find a replacement for deGrom who appears likely to leave.
The teams to look at here are the St. Louis Cardinals and the Chicago Cubs. The Cards need an ace and there’s no more of a natural fit than lefty Carlos Rodon. The Cubs could use his services also. However, I think Carlos Correa or Xander Bogaerts would be even more impactful. The Cubs have a giant hole at short and they’ll probably lose Willson Contreras at catcher. Their lineup needs a stud to build around.
The Brewers desperately need a bat as well and Anthony Rizzo would make a ton of sense.
The San Francisco Giants need to do everything in their power to lure Aaron Judge back home to the Bay Area. He could have a Barry Bonds-type impact if he signed with them. The Giants are the clear-cut third-best team in the NL West right now. Signing Judge would close the gap between the San Diego Padres and Los Angeles Dodgers.
The Dodgers could look different if Turner leaves and they won’t have a suitable replacement for him. The Padres will welcome back Tatis after he finishes serving his suspension.
The American League will be explored in my next piece.