Manny Machado is a game-changer who will likely be dealt to another team before July 31, the final day in which a player can be traded without clearing waivers.
In this scenario, Machado will be on loan for three months and can resign with that team or file for free agency and sign with a different team.
Machado, who plays third base and shortstop for the Baltimore Orioles, is a four-time All-Star, an elite hitter and a two-time Gold Glove winner.
The teams interested in acquiring Machado, the third overall pick in 2010 by the Orioles, are the Dodgers, Philadelphia Phillies, Milwaukee Brewers, Atlanta Braves, Arizona Diamondbacks, Cleveland Indians, Chicago Cubs and New York Yankees.
Right now, the favorites in landing Machado are the Dodgers, Phillies and Yankees.
All have designs on playing deep into October and capturing the World Series.
Machado has cracked 24 homers with 65 runs batted in and has posted a .315 batting average.
Machado is a hot commodity and will supply offensive punch for any of those squads.
From 2015 through 2017, Machado has walloped 30 homers or more with a high of 37 in 2016 when he drove in a career-best 96 runs.
Machado is no stranger to the postseason and has played with good results.
Machado played in the American League wild-card game versus the Texas Rangers in 2012 and batted .333 with an RBI.
In the AL Division Series versus the Yankees that same year, Machado had two hits in 16 at-bats for a .125 batting average, but clubbed a homer.
In the AL wild-card match in 2016 against the Toronto Blue Jays, Machado had one hit in four at-bats.
Then there is the argument which says why mess with team chemistry when all are playing well?
This notion is squashed when someone of Machado’s talent is available and it’s fairly certain he will make them better.
But there’s also a gamble given Machado is going to be a free agent at the end of this season and can sign with another team.
If the Dodgers obtain Machado, he’ll probably play shortstop, which is Corey Seager’s position.
Seager, the National League Rookie of the Year in 2016, had Tommy John surgery and will miss the rest of this campaign.
What if the Dodgers want to sign Machado to a long-term deal and he agrees? What would they do with Seager?
That’s the dilemma the Dodgers face. But it’s a good dilemma.
Rick Assad has written about sports for the Pasadena Star-News and Los Angeles Times. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.