The Scott Podsednik Trade: LA’s perspective

I’d imagine most of us have probably lived on a shoestring budget at one point in our lives, buying what we can afford rather than what we’d actually like to have. Top Ramen has built an empire by capitalizing on people in that situation. So, while the Dodgers acquisition of Scott Podsednik may not be the sexiest move ever, it’s what they can afford. And, for what it cost them, it’s a deal worth making.

Podsednik is more of a role player than an everyday guy, but he’s good enough to be a useful part timer on a team that needs one. And, more importantly, he gives the Dodgers a reason to stop using Garret Anderson.

It’s hard to overstate how bad Anderson has been this year. He’s been worth -13.8 runs in just 112 plate appearances, a historically awful offensive performance. He’s just completely finished as a major leaguer, but because he has the veteran label, Torre has continued to use him.

When Manny Ramirez returns, Podsednik will be able to fill the role that Anderson has been taking up, and he’s good enough to give them a decent fill-in while Manny’s on the shelf. He’s no kind of star, but his combination of speed and contact skills make him a decent enough hitter, and he’d be a pretty nifty pinch-runner if the team makes it to the playoffs.

I’m sure the Dodgers would have preferred to be in on Dan Haren, Cliff Lee, or Roy Oswalt, but the divorce kept them from shopping in the high rent district. Given the minimal financial cost and what looks to be a low price in terms of prospects, this is a pretty decent job of bargain shopping. The Dodgers get something that makes them better, even if only incrementally, without paying a high price.

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Dave is the Managing Editor of FanGraphs.