The Dodgers added some outfield depth Monday and announced an agreement with the Tigers for a deal that broadcasts Trayce Thompson to Los Angeles for cash. It is the second stint in LA for the 31-year-old.
Thompson had not been in Detroit’s 40-man roster, having signed a minor league contract a month ago. He also won’t immediately fill a 40-man spot with Los Angeles, although it’s likely the Dodgers will add him to the big league club in the next few days. Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal reported this morning that LA was looking for a right-handed outfielder to hit in the wake Mookie Betts’ Travel to the injured list. Thompson, it seems, will get the first crack in the role.
A former White Sox second-round pick, Thompson has appeared in parts of six big league seasons. That included a 2016-17 run at Dodger Blue when the club landed him from Chicago in a three-team trade that was broadcast death Frazier from Cincinnati to the Sox. Thompson appeared in 107 games for Los Angeles during those two seasons, the most work he’s put together with any of the five MLB clubs he’s suited to.
That includes a six-game stint at division rivals Padres this season. Thompson wasn’t producing during this cup of coffee in San Diego, but he’s absolutely at the top level of minors in 2022. Between the top affiliates of San Diego and Detroit, he put together a .305/.365/.721 line and blasted 17 home runs in 41 games. Thompson has slammed in 28.2% of his triple-A record appearances, but his massive impact from a power perspective was enough to convince the Dodgers’ front office to bring him back.
Swing-and-miss concerns were a similar problem for Thompson at the major league level. En route to a .205/.280/.397 line, he has punched out in 28.6% of his 640 career plate appearances. He’s hit 26 homers and stole 11 bases, but underperforming base counts have relegated him to journeyman status in recent years. Thompson was unsurprisingly better at holding draw advantage than against same-handed weapons, but his .218/.283/.445 line against southpaw is still a bit underperforming.
Thompson will be something of a stopgap while Betts recovers, an unsurprising move for the organization. Rosenthal wrote this morning that the team was unwilling to forgo notable young talent on any deal, arguing that with a premium addition closer to the close they could take a bigger swing if Betts was absent for an extended period.
MLB.com’s Juan Toribio First, the Dodgers reported that they agreed on a deal to land Thompson. Jorge Castillo of the Los Angeles Times confirmed there was a deal while Athletic’s Cody Stavenhagen At first, the Tigers reported that they would receive cash in return.