Monday, October 24, 2011

2011 Los Angeles Dodgers off-season preview: Dodger free agents

This is the first of a five-part series in previewing the off-season for the Los Angeles Dodgers. It breaks down as follows:
  • Dodgers' free agents
  • Arbitration-eligible Dodgers
  • Free agent position players
  • Free agent pitchers
  • Trade targets
Ned Colletti is famous for not offering arbitration to players, so I wouldn't expect Barajas or Kuroda to get an offer. That doesn't mean they won't be back in the fold for 2012.

Dodger free agents

C Rod Barajas (Type B)
3B Casey Blake
RHP Jonathan Broxton
INF Jamey Carroll
RHP Jon Garland
RHP Hiroki Kuroda (Type B)
RHP Mike MacDougal
INF Aaron Miles
RHP Vicente Padilla
OF/1B Juan Rivera

Barajas: He was inexplicably signed to a $3.25 million contract last off-season. He is in a similar position this winter -- a Type-B free agent looking for another contract. Will Ned Colletti be foolish enough to give him anything more than a couple million? At that price, he's worth it to come back. He has pop, but not much else. His defense is average. Abritration: Yes

Blake: His option was not exercised by the Dodgers, so there's almost zero chance he'll be back.

Broxton: This one is tough. On a really cheap deal, he'd be a nice risk-reward option. However, he might be done with the Dodgers and the Dodgers might very well be done with him.

Carroll: When Carroll signed two years ago, it seemed like a throw-away deal. However, Carroll was nothing but solid for the Dodgers. He was a trade candidate in July, but the Dodgers kept him. He'd be a solid re-signing, but the Dodgers probably can fill his spot with someone making the league minimum.

Garland: Like Blake, Garland was not retained and will likely not return to the Dodgers.

Kuroda: He was a hot target at the trade deadline, but he ultimately wanted to stay in Los Angeles. I applaud his loyalty. It seems he's either going to pitch for the Dodgers or not pitch in the Majors at all. My gut tells me he'll be back, but we'll see what happens. Arbitration: Yes, without a doubt

MacDougal: He was brought in as a non-roster invitee and gave the Dodgers more than their money's worth. He's in line for a slight pay raise. I think the Dodgers have enough low-salary relievers to rely on without having to use resources on bringing him back.

Miles: Like MacDougal, Miles was a non-roster invitee and exceeded expectations. Like Carroll, the Dodgers have cheaper options to do what Miles does, but I wouldn't be surprised to see him back.

Padilla: He was supposed to be the bullpen utility guy, but that plan failed. Padilla got hurt and threw just 8 2/3 innings for the Dodgers this season. The Dodgers could bring him back, as he'd be a nice insurance policy for Nathan Eovaldi, the projected No. 5 starter (in October, so take that with a grain of salt).

Rivera: He was a surprise acquisition and did a solid job playing left field, right field and first base. I'd have no problem bringing him back as the fourth outfielder, meaning Jerry Sands would (and should) start.


The Dodgers have a couple of decent free agents and Kuroda. I could easily see three or four guys from this list returning. The Dodgers aren't exactly in a position to break the bank, so retaining much of the talent (a word that I use loosely) from the 2011 team could be a realistic option.

Next up: Arbitration-eligible Dodgers

1 comment:

  1. It is truly a sad day in a major major market that
    we fans can not expect to see a solid contending
    championship team on the field night after night
    in Dodgertown. Just getting by is not Dodger baseball!