Los Angeles Dodgers

Projecting the Los Angeles Dodgers lineup with Mookie Betts

The Los Angeles Dodgers have acquired Mookie Betts, and here’s how the lineup stands to look now.

After weeks of rumors, it has happened. The Los Angeles Dodgers acquired outfielder Mookie Betts, and pitcher David Price, from the Boston Red Sox on Tuesday as part of a three-team trade

Betts is set to become a free agent after the coming season, and he seems intent on hitting the market. The Red Sox were faced with losing him for nothing more than a draft pick, so they decided to trade a player they should be building around in the name of reducing payroll.

The Dodgers fell short of getting the top free agents this winter, but the addition of Betts puts them on any list of offseason winners now. Getting over the hump in October was going to require a big move for the seven-time reigning National League West champions, and with spring training on the horizon they got it done.

Outfielder Joc Pederson was traded to the Los Angeles Angels after the move to get Betts, and outfielder Alex Verdugo is headed to Boston in the Betts deal.

The Dodgers set the NL single-season record with 279 home runs last year, and they led the league in runs scored (886) and OPS (.810). And now they’re adding Betts, who has led the majors in runs scored in each of the last two seasons with an average of 29 home runs per season since 2016.

Manager Dave Roberts can configure a lineup almost any way he wants. But here’s a likely way he’ll fill out his lineup card on a daily basis with Betts in the fold:

1. Mookie Betts-RF
2. Max Muncy-1B
3. Justin Turner-3B
4. Cody Bellinger-CF
5. Corey Seager-SS
6. A.J. Pollock-LF
7. Will Smith-C
8. Gavin Lux-2B

Betts has hit leadoff for 73 percent of his career plate appearances, with an on-base percentage of .413 over the last two seasons. So it’s a natural fit, and really a no-brainer, for him to continue to hit atop the lineup for the Dodgers.

After Betts – and let’s lock reigning MVP Bellinger into the cleanup spot – Muncy, Turner, Seager and Pollock could hit anywhere in the top six. If he can stay healthy, Pollock could give the lineup a notable boost himself.

Improving the best lineup in the NL, and one of the best lineups in baseball, might have seemed impossible in any real way once the top-tier free agents were off the board. But the Dodgers have gone out and done it, bringing in one of the best players in baseball to create an even more intimidating lineup.

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