With baseball's annual Winter Meetings set to start on Monday in Nashville, Tenn., most of the hints being dropped indicate the Dodgers will not overpay with money for a free agent or with prospects in a trade. However, there is pressure to keep the customers satisfied in the wake of aggressive moves by the Angels, who have already traded for right-hander Jon Garland and signed free-agent center fielder Torii Hunter.
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2007 finish: 82-80, fourth place in National League West
Deals so far:
Players eligible for arbitration:
Left-handers Joe Beimel and Mark Hendrickson, right-handers Scott Proctor and Yhency Brazoban and outfielder Jason Repko.
Outfielder Luis Gonzalez, infielders Shea Hillenbrand, Olmedo Saenz, Ramon Martinez and Mark Sweeney, catchers Chad Moeller and Mike Lieberthal, right-handers Roberto Hernandez, Chin-hui Tsao and Rudy Seanez and left-handers David Wells and Randy Wolf.
Needs: Big bat (preferably at third base) and starting-pitching depth. The Dodgers have been looking for a middle-of-the-order bat since Adrian Beltre left. After Brad Penny, Derek Lowe and Chad Billingsley, the rotation is questionable with Esteban Loaiza and Jason Schmidt coming off injury-riddled seasons. After that on the list are utility infielder and backup catcher.
The organization's greatest depth is young talent, primarily in the infield with Andy LaRoche, Tony Abreu and Chin-lung Hu. The young players with high ceilings that appeal most to trade partners are outfielder Matt Kemp and 19-year-old left-hander Clayton Kershaw.
Ken Gurnick is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.