As expected, it looks like Hanley Ramirez will reject the Dodgers’ $15.3 million qualifying offer and become a free agent. At least, that was the logical conclusion after Ramirez all but renounced his ties to the Dodgers in a series of tweets Thursday:
Ramirez also changed his Twitter bio to read “MLB shortstop,” taken from the business card of a man who knows what position he wants to play but doesn’t care where.
Alexei Ramirez has a .277 batting average, 99 home runs and 118 stolen bases in seven major league seasons, all with the Chicago White Sox. (Getty Images)
The Dodgers might have a Ramirez at shortstop next year after all.
According to a report on CBSChicago.com, the Dodgers are one of at least three teams that have inquired on White Sox shortstop Alexei Ramirez. The New York Yankees and New York Mets (“the most aggressive [team] in their pursuit of a shortstop over the past 12 months”) are also mentioned in the report.
Farhan Zaidi will become the 11th general manager in Dodgers history. (Getty Images)
In case you missed it, the Dodgers are expected to name Farhan Zaidi their next general manager at some point this week. Compared to many assistant general managers, much was written about Zaidi during his 10 years (2005-14) with the Oakland A’s.
Former Dodgers catcher Russell Martin batted 290 with 11 home runs and 67 RBIs for the Pittsburgh Pirates in 2014.
The signing of Ryan Jackson and the release of Scott Elbert yesterday put the Dodgers’ 40-man roster at 36 Monday. Today is the first day free agents can sign with any club. With four empty roster spots, what should Andrew Friedman do?
Here are four free ideas:
The Dodgers claimed shortstop Ryan Jackson off waivers from the San Diego Padres on Monday.
Jackson, 26, was playing for the Padres’ Triple-A affiliate in April when he suffered a serious wrist injury that required surgery. He returned to play two Triple-A games at the end of August.
A 2009 draft pick out of the University of Miami, Jackson has two hits in 24 career at-bats, all with the St. Louis Cardinals in 2012 and 2013.
The Dodgers have 36 players on their 40-man roster.
Dodgers pitcher Scott Elbert reacts after giving up a two-run home run to St. Louis Cardinals’ Kolten Wong (background) during the seventh inning of the Dodgers’ 3-1 loss in Game 3 of the NLDS on Monday. (Associated Press photo)
Scott Elbert, who journeyed back from Tommy John surgery to capture an unlikely playoff roster spot in 2014, has elected free agency and been removed from the Dodgers’ 40-man roster.
Elbert, 29, was designated for assignment in June, went unclaimed, and pitched his way back onto the Dodgers’ roster for a September call-up. He made seven regular-season appearances and allowed only one run, then was a surprise selection to the Dodgers’ National League Division Series roster against the St. Louis Cardinals.
In his only postseason appearance, Elbert gave up a two-run home run to the Cardinals’ Kolten Wong in Game 3 of the series, a 3-1 Dodgers loss.
In six major-league seasons, Elbert has made 127 appearances, all out of the Dodgers’ bullpen. He has a 4-3 record and a 3.57 earned-run average.
Elbert was a first-round draft pick by the Dodgers in 2004.
Dodgers pitcher Brian Wilson blew four of five save opportunities in 2014. He will make $9.5 million next season. (Getty Images)
exercised a player option in his contract that will pay the right-hander $9.5 million in 2015.
Wilson made 61 appearances in 2014, all but six of which came in the eighth inning or later. He began the season as the primary set-up man to Kenley Jansen, but finished the season as more of a situational eighth-inning reliever. Wilson struggled to retire left-handed hitters all season (.914 OPS) and blew four of the five save opportunities he was given.
Hanley Ramirez hit 13 home runs and stole 14 bases in an injury-plagued 2014 season. (Associated Press photo)
As expected, the Dodgers have extended a qualifying offer to free agent shortstop Hanley Ramirez. Ramirez has until 2 p.m. next Monday to accept the offer, which amounts to a one-year contract worth $15.3 million.
If Ramirez rejects the offer and signs with another team, the Dodgers would receive a compensatory draft pick in June 2015.
Ramirez, 30, slashed .283/.369/.448 in the final year of a six-year, $70 million contract that he signed as a member of the Miami Marlins. Though he was a steadying force on offense (132 OPS-plus), he struggled mightily on defense. His .963 fielding percentage matched Washington’s Ian Desmond for the lowest among regular National League shortstops and his -10.3 UZR was the lowest among all NL shortstops.
The Dodgers cannot move Ramirez to third base without displacing Juan Uribe, or to first base without displacing Adrian Gonzalez. If that doesn’t make a return to Los Angeles unlikely, Ramirez would be taking a voluntary pay cut from the $16 million he made last year if he accepts the qualifying offer.
In the last two years, 22 free agents have received qualifying offers and none have accepted.
Though Ramirez’s nagging injuries were a constant source of concern last season, there should be a sizable market for a player with a career batting average of .300, plus power and the ability to steal a base. Ramirez could prolong his peak years by moving to the American League, where he can be a designated hitter.
Several Dodgers prospects are playing in the Arizona Fall League this month for the Glendale Desert Dogs. So it’s no surprise that team president and CEO Stan Kasten would be in Arizona this week.
What might raise an eyebrow — we’re qualifying this as news with about 45 minutes left before the World Series begins — is that Kasten is reportedly hanging out with former Diamondbacks and Padres general manager Josh Byrnes:
Byrnes has been mentioned as a possible candidate to succeed Ned Colletti as the Dodgers’ general manager. The team hasn’t made an official announcement since Andrew Friedman announced Friday that he intended to hire someone to fill the position.
Russell Martin batted 290 with 11 home runs and 67 RBIs in 2014.
Former Dodgers catcher Russell Martin is set to be a free agent soon.