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Report: Dodgers’ Pursuit of Judge Could Change Betts’s Role

As MLB gears up for the Aaron Judge sweepstakes this winter, another big-market team has already reportedly emerged as a viable contender for the Yankees star’s services.

MLB.com’s Mark Feinsand reported Monday that the Dodgers “could become serious players” in the race to land Judge in free agency. Feinsand added that, if L.A. were to pull off the seismic move, the 31-year-old’s arrival could lead to a position change for star Mookie Betts from right field to second base.

Should L.A. end up pursuing Judge in the coming months, the club would likely part ways with several free agents, including Trea Turner, Craig Kimbrel and Joey Gallo, to create roughly $100 million in cap space to make a bid for the newly crowned American League single-season home run king, per Feinsand.

While the possible signing could mean big changes for the Dodgers’ lineup, both players have already more than proven their versatility throughout their careers. Judge has spent the majority of his career in right field, where he started 54 games this season, but the four-time All-Star also played most of his games in center field this year when the Yankees were thin at the position.

As for Betts, who was drafted as a second baseman in 2011, the six-time All-Star has continued to shine as a right fielder since joining the Dodgers in 2020. But the five-time Gold Glove winner publicly stated in September that he would be open to moving back to the infield if an opportunity presented itself; Betts started five games and played in two others at second base this season.

“Being able to play second base is kind of something I’ve been doing my whole life,” Betts said, per Feinsand. “Getting to go back there is just a lot of fun for me, personally. I really, really do enjoy it, but they pay me to catch these fly balls.”

Signing Judge would certainly be a massive move for the Dodgers coming off an 111–51 campaign that saw the club claim its ninth NL West title in 10 years. L.A.’s season ended on Oct. 15 after losing in the NLDS to the Padres.

Meanwhile, Judge and the AL East champion Yankees finished the season 99–63 and advanced to the ALCS against the Astros. Houston defeated New York on Sunday night to earn a four-game sweep.

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