By: David Rosenthal
4) No TV deal progress
No significant progress has been made on Dodgers games being broadcast on outlets other than Time Warner.
The team did strike a deal this summer giving Charter customers access to Dodgers game starting next season.
However, those with DirecTV, Verizon FiOS, AT&T U-verse, Dish Network or Cox Cable will still be unable to watch the Dodgers play during the 2016-17 season.
This has been a slap in the face to thousands of loyal fans across the Southland, and the team needs to finally address this problem and realize that this has gone too far.
3) Signing Chase Utley as their “big move”
After his poor performance after being acquired in the middle of last season, the Dodgers stunned many fans by re-signing the 36-year-old to a one-year deal.
In 124 at-bats with the Dodgers, Utley hit .202 with 25 hits, three home runs, and nine RBIs.
Utley was brought in for his veteran leadership and clutch hitting, but his biggest contribution was his controversial takeout slide of Mets shortstop Reuben Tejada in the National League Division Series.
How do the Dodgers think resigning Utley will help them one bit? Why wouldn’t they first focus on trying to re-sign Howie Kendrick, the team’s starting second baseman?
It simply doesn’t make sense.
2) Where is the bullpen help?
As many Dodgers fans know, the bullpen last season was the team’s Achilles heel.
Closer Kenley Jansen was the lone bright spot in what otherwise was a collection of individual disasters.
Chris Hatcher got it together at the end of the season, but other than that, fans had to hold their breath anytime the Dodgers were forced to go to their bullpen.
I understand the team reportedly struck a deal for Reds closer Aroldis Chapman, which would have been a tremendous addition to an abysmal bullpen, but just a day after the trade was reported, Chapman found himself in the middle of a domestic-violence scandal.
The Dodgers have since backed away from the trade with the Reds, and rightfully so.
The last thing this team needs is more controversy, and that’s exactly what they would get if they took on Chapman.
There is no place for domestic violence in sports, and even if Chapman is cleared of the incident, a dark cloud of speculation will hang over him for the rest of his career.
The Dodgers must focus their attention elsewhere in order to shore up holes in the bullpen.
The team let Darren O’Day, arguably the top reliever on the market, re-sign with the Orioles without making a serious run at him.
They also let the Red Sox trade for Craig Kimbrel, who the Padres were desperately looking to unload.
They watched as the Brewers traded Francisco “K-Rod” Rodriguez to the Tigers for just one prospect.
And even some lower-end pitchers who could bolster any bullpen, Chad Qualls and Jason Motte, signed small deals with the Colorado Rockies.
1 ) Letting Zack Greinke get away / Not signing David Price
While David Price inked his contract with the Red Sox days before Zack Greinke elected to sign with the Arizona Diamondbacks, the Dodgers never made a serious pursuit of Price in the first place.
The team was allegedly set on making Greinke their “first priority,” but when it came time to offer the Cy Young runner-up an extra year on his contract, the supposedly cash-heavy Dodgers front office shied away.
The Dodgers reportedly offered him a five-year contract paying around $31 million per year.
Greinke ended up signing a six-year contract with the Diamondbacks, where he will be paid around $34 million a year.
So, let me get this straight, the Dodgers let one of the best pitchers in the MLB, who they said was their “first priority” walk away and sign with a division rival for an extra year on his contract, and about $3 million more in annual salary?
The Dodgers have no problem charging $12 for a Bud Light or $6.50 for a slice of cheese pizza, (pepperoni pizza costs $7), but can’t pay one of their best players an extra couple of million dollars?
The team’s payroll in 2015 eclipsed $300 million, and the team let Greinke walk for a couple of extra million dollars a year?
It just doesn’t make sense. The team’s payroll was infinitely bigger than any other team’s last season, yet now, the team has apparently become frugal when it comes to the most important part of the team. … What?
If the team wasn’t going to give Greinke the sixth year he wanted, why wouldn’t they focus their time and assets on someone like David Price?
Price is a charismatic, dominant starting pitcher who, alongside Clayton Kershaw, would have given the Dodgers two franchise players for at least the next five years.
The team made a great hire with their new manager Dave Roberts and got a good value when signing Hisashi Iwakuma, a middle-of-the-rotation guy, to a three-year $45 million deal.
However, these moves alone will not ensure a successful 2016-17 season.
The Dodgers are going to have to make a much bigger splash, and fast, if they want to have any chance of competing for the World Series next season.
Let’s face it, Clayton Kershaw cannot pitch every inning.
(David Rosenthal is a web producer for CBS Los Angeles. David lives in Los Angeles and is a Dodgers, Kings and Lakers fan. If you have any questions or comments for him, he can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.)