‘Nolan Arenado will be a Dodger by Christmas’: former GM

Are the Colorado Rockies about to break one of the cardinal rules of trading superstars?

Former MLB general manager Jim Bowden declared Friday that the Rockies will soon trade slugging third baseman Nolan Arenado to the division rival Los Angeles Dodgers. That means seeing him 18 times per year during a normal 162-game regular season.

“Nolan Arenado will be a Dodger by Christmas,” Bowden said on MLB Network Radio on SiriusXM. “I spoke with the Dodgers and they are obsessed with getting a right-handed bat, preferably a third baseman. They have been engaged with [general manager] Jeff Bridich of the Rockies.

“Arenado is planning on opting out of his contract with the Rockies in a year, [shortstop] Trevor Story is a free agent in a year, and the Rockies have serious financial issues after the pandemic. The trade talks between the Rockies and Dodgers are real. I think it’s going to happen.”

Arenado signed an eight-year, $260 million contract, reportedly with a full no-trade clause through 2026 but can opt out for free agency after the coming season.

The 29-year-old five-time All-Star and eight-time Gold Glove winner would be just the latest superstar added to the Dodgers, who won their first World Series title since 1988 after acquiring Mookie Betts last offseason.

The San Diego Padres have emerged as a serious threat to the Dodgers’ stay atop the NL West, so there is no room to slow down the arms race.

“I don’t think the Dodgers have a lot of competition in trading for Arenado because of the contract and the opt-out,” Bowden said. “I believe the deal will be contingent on Arenado eradicating the opt-out and agreeing to stay with the Dodgers on the contract he agreed upon with no opt out. This is going to be a major storyline.”

Dodgers third baseman Justin Turner is a free agent, and Arenado grew up in California as a Dodgers fan.

Arenado had a career-year in 2019 but saw his OPS drop from .962 to .738 in 2020, when he played through a left shoulder injury.

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