Justin Turner picked a great time to register his first full season in the majors, playing a career-high 151 games, stepping to the dish 622 times, and blowing away the 439 plate appearances recorded the previous season. Given that 2014's .404 BABIP is an outlier, last season's .293 landed on the low end of Turner's career range, despite a typical line drive rate and hard-hit percentage. One reason for the depressed BABIP was that he hit more flyballs than ever but since that resulted in 27 homers, no one is complaining. Baselining Turner for 2017 is tricky since we don't know if he'll maintain that elevated flyball rate. Then there's the issue of health. While there are countless examples of players losing the injury prone tag, Turner needs to stay on the field for another 150 games before he's absolved. When healthy, solid plate skills render Turner a solid floor; pay for that, not for the 2016 level of production.
Turner agreed to a four-year, $64 million contract with the Dodgers on Monday, FOX Sports' Ken Rosenthal reports. Turner has been worth 12.9 wins above replacement (according to Fangraphs) over the past three years, but he is also entering his age-32 season, so this seems like a fair deal for both parties. He hit a career-high 27 home runs last year -- his previous career high was 16 -- and while he seems unlikely to duplicate that power performance, his career .282 average seems like a good projection for 2017. If he can stay healthy he should also be good for 75-plus runs and RBI, hitting near the top of the Dodgers' lineup.
Turner rejected the Dodgers' qualifying offer Monday, making him a free agent, Jon Heyman of Today's Knuckleball reports. Coming off of another productive season at the plate, Turner's decision to decline the one-year offer comes as no surprise. He'll now hit the open market, where he figures to secure a long-term deal from another franchise. Another Dodgers player, Kenley Jansen, also declined the team's qualifying offer Monday, as expected.
Turner received a qualifying offer from the Dodgers on Monday, Joel Sherman of the New York Post reports. Turner put together another productive season at the plate for Los Angeles, meaning that he'll likely decline this offer. However, the 31-year-old's market value will likely take a hit now that he'll also cost his signing team a draft pick.
Turner is out of the lineup for Wednesday's game against the Padres. Turner will take a rare seat against a right-handed pitcher Wednesday with the Dodgers facing Luis Perdomo. He's hitting .306 with a .925 OPS against righties on the year, but with the postseason approaching, manager Dave Roberts opted to give him a day off for the first time in over two weeks. Howie Kendrick will take over at third base Wednesday.
Turner went 3-for-3 with two RBI, two runs, a stolen base and two walks in a 14-1 victory over the Rockies on Saturday. The third baseman is 5-for-6 the last two nights since sitting out Thursday. He has multiple hits in three of his last five games. Turner is hitting .274 with 27 home runs, 89 RBI, 75 runs and four steals in 533 at-bats this season.