espn.com just reported on its blog that the Dodgers have offered Andruw Jones two years and $32 million. I haven’t been able to confirm that yet, but it sounds reasonable based on everything I do know. Question is whether super agent Scott Boras is going to go for a deal like that given that Jones is believed to be seeking a deal in the neighborhood of Torii Hunter’s five-year, $90 million contract with the Angels. One thing about Jones, you can’t accuse him of padding his stats during his walk year — he batted just .222 with a .311 OBP, and his 26 home runs matched his lowest total since his lowest total since 1997, when he hit just 18 in his first full season in the majors.
The late Dodgers owner, who moved the team to Los Angeles in 1958, was one of five managers and executives who got in on the veterans committee ballot announced this morning at the winter meetings. O’Malley, who died in 1979, was joined by late commissioner Bowie Kuhn, former Pittsburgh Pirates owner Barney Dreyfuss and former major-league managers Billy Southworth and Dick Williams.
O’Malley’s grandson, Tom Seidler, one of several O’Malley family members who are part of the ownership group of the Visalia Oaks of the California League, was in Nashville for the announcement.
“We have always been pround of what Walter and Peter accomplished,” Seidler said. “Today, we are especially excited for Walter and proud of him and all he accomplished. I think it’s a nice thing that this is coming on the 50th anniversary of the Dodgers’ move to Los Angeles (next) year.”
There will be a media conference call with Peter O’Malley at 1 p.m. West Coast time, so I’ll update after that.
On another note, the Dodgers have increased their interest in free-agent center fielder Andruw Jones, largely because reigning N.L. Gold Glove center fielder Aaron Rowand has, for the moment anyway, priced himself out of the Dodgers’ range. More on that as the day progresses.
Chalk up another one. I was alerted this morning that the Diamondbacks will release their spring sked on Monday, and that the Dodgers are on it for March 21 at Tucson Electric Park. That makes four Cactus League games that appear to be flnalized — March 20 against the White Sox, March 21 against the D-Backs, March 23 against the Rockies and March 26 against the Royals. Meanwhile, I got a call earlier this week from a Dodgers club official who swears none of this is finalized, that the team still isn’t officially going to China and that MLB has TWO spring training schedules, one for if the Dodgers/Padres go to China and the Dodgers finish the spring in Arizona and one for if that doesn’t happen, which presumably would mean the Dodgers spend the whole spring in Vero. But I perused all the schedules of all the Florida teams that have released theirs (including those on the Gulf Coast, whom the Dodgers never play), and in fairness, many of them have not released theirs yet. But of the ones who have, the latest scheduled game the Dodgers have in Florida so far is March 18 against the Marlins at Roger Dean Stadium in Jupiter. Given that the China games are set for March 14-15 in Beijing (with two exhibitions in Taiwan tentatively scheduled to follow), that would seem to suggest March 19 as the date when the entire team — both the half that goes to China and the half that stays behind in Vero — would congregate in PHX for the final eight days of camp before returning to Los Angeles for those four exhibitions with the Angels (one) and Red Sox (three). But hey, none of this is official yet (wink, wink).