The Dodgers signed free agent Dallas McPherson to a minor-league contract Friday.
McPherson last surfaced in the majors in 2011, when he made 15 plate appearances with the White Sox. Once a top prospect in the Angels’ system, the 32-year-old flamed out due to injuries after losing the starting third base job in Anaheim to Chone Figgins in 2006. He sat out all of the 2007 season after having back surgery to fuse two vertebrae in his lower back before resurfacing in 2008 with the Albuquerque Isotopes, then a Florida Marlins affiliate.
With the Dodgers, McPherson appears headed for Albuquerque again. The Isotopes’ third baseman last season, Josh Fields, recently signed a minor-league deal with the Philadelphia Phillies. McPherson has spent the majority of his career at the hot corner, but also saw time at first, center field, right field and designated hitter in 2012, when he split the year between the White Sox and Pirates’ organizations.
McPherson batted .265/.344/.490 in 2012 with 17 home runs and 62 RBIs. The Dodgers will be his sixth organization in the last seven years.
The Dodgers formally announced their 2013 minor-league coaching staff Monday. It’s a long list with mostly familiar names:
Former Dodgers catcher Mike Piazza is on the Hall of Fame ballot for the first time this year. Voting began last month and concludes in January. Earlier, we asked you who you thought belonged in the Hall, and a lot of you liked Piazza.
I could probably link to at least a dozen written pro/con Piazza arguments, but I’ll single out the one Jay Jaffe wrote for SI.com today for its even-handedness between numbers and anecdotes, and its fair treatment of the PED question. (Piazza wasn’t ever connected to steroids on the record, though he did admit to using androstenedione early in his career.)
My two cents: Piazza is a first ballot HOFer, and I’d like to believe that voters will agree.
A week ago, we asked how the Dodgers did at the Winter Meetings. You weren’t impressed.
My, how things can change in a week.
Skip Schumaker passed his physical and was officially added to the Dodgers’ roster today. Scott Van Slyke was designated for assignment to make room for Schumaker on the 40-man roster, likely ending his brief time as a Dodger.
Van Slyke, the son of former major-leaguer Andy, actually spent eight years in the Dodger organization. He didn’t reach the majors until Year 8, however, when he appeared in 27 games between May 9 and July 8 of this year. The highlight came in a May 20 game against the St. Louis Cardinals, when Van Slyke hit a three-run home run in the seventh inning, the game-winning hit in a 6-5 Dodgers win. (Coincidentally, Schumaker started that game in center field and hit a two-run triple off Chad Billingsley.)
Unfortunately for Van Slyke, he didn’t do enough after that to stick in the majors. By the time Matt Kemp‘s hamstring eventually came around, Van Slyke had been passed on the outfield depth chart by Elian Herrera. He finished with a .167 average (9-for-54) and two home runs.
Van Slyke was named the Branch Rickey Organizational Player of the Year in 2011, when he batted .348 with 20 home runs and 92 RBIs for Double-A Chattanooga. In eight minor league seasons, Van Slyke has a .290 batting average.
In today’s rich-getting-richer news: The Dodgers are getting $11.7 million over the next three seasons from the Boston Red Sox, according to CBS Boston.