Report: Dodgers trying to bring back Howie Kendrick.

Howie Kendrick

Howie Kendrick hit nine nine home runs and drove in 54 in his first season with the Dodgers. (Keith Birmingham/Staff photographer)

Howie Kendrick, who rejected a qualifying offer from the Dodgers at the end of last season, could return in 2016 according to a report Friday morning.
Ken Rosenthal of FoxSports.com reported via Twitter that the Dodgers are “making progress” on a new contract with the free agent second baseman.

Because Kendrick rejected the Dodgers’ qualifying offer, the team stands to gain a compensatory draft pick (after the first round) if he signs somewhere else.

Kendrick, who turns 33 in July, appeared in 117 games last season, his fewest this decade, by virtue of a hamstring injury. He posted a .295/.336/.409 slash line along with nine home runs and 54 RBIs.

The Dodgers re-signed veteran Chase Utley to a one-year, $7 million contract in December. He and Enrique Hernandez stood to split time at second base if the Dodgers didn’t bring back Kendrick. The Dodgers also acquired Micah Johnson, a left-handed hitting second baseman, from the Chicago White Sox in the trade that sent Jose Peraza and Scott Schebler to the Cincinnati Reds.

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Season in review about nothing: Chin-Hui Tsao, ‘The Abstinence.’

Chin-Hui Tsao

After signing with the Dodgers, Chin-Hui Tsao appeared in 39 games (five in the majors) following six years away from organized baseball. (Getty Images)

This is Part 50 of a series in which every member of the 2015 Dodgers has his season juxtaposed with an episode of the greatest sitcom of all-time. Don’t take it too seriously.

Chin-Hui Tsao, RP

Key stats: 5 G, 8 ER in 7 innings while pitching; 1.000/1.000/2.000 slash line while batting.

Seinfeld episode: “The Abstinence” (Season 8, Episode 9)

Key quote: “I used to share that same outlook. But now, I have so many things to occupy my mind. For instance, the atom.”

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Fernando Valenzuela is a government spokesperson for citizenship now.

Fernando Valenzuela became a household name in Los Angeles many years before he became a United States citizen. When he did take a test and an oath and join about 8,000 others at a naturalization ceremony at the Los Angeles Convention Center last summer, Valenzuela did something he never could at Dodger Stadium: He blended in.

Now, Valenzuela is in the spotlight again. The retired pitcher and current Dodgers broadcaster joined Los Angeles mayor Eric Garcetti and León Rodríguez, Director of the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, on a conference call Thursday to stress the importance of citizenship. Valenzuela is officially a “Presidential Ambassador for Citizenship and Naturalization,” the public face of a nationwide movement to encourage legal permanent residents, especially from Mexico, to apply for U.S. citizenship.

“I get to vote in my first presidential election,” Valenzuela said. “If anybody has a chance, an opportunity to be a citizen, why not? They can do it. It’s very important.”

The message is simple, but it may be powerful. Few names and faces are more recognizable in the local Mexican-American community than Valenzuela’s. On Friday, leaders from the civic and private sectors will convene in Los Angeles to further the goal of encouraging citizenship. Valenzuela’s involvement from this point forward isn’t clear, but for a day his message was.

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Corey Seager tops Baseball Prospectus’ annual top prospect list.

Corey Seager

Corey Seager is Baseball Prospectus’ number-1 prospect going into the 2016 season. (Hans Gutknecht/Staff photographer)

The Dodgers have six of the top 101 prospects in baseball, according to Baseball Prospectus, including the top-ranked player on the list, shortstop Corey Seager.

Pitchers Julio Urias (6), Jose De Leon (28), Grant Holmes (40), Yadier Alvarez (78) and outfielder Yusniel Diaz (91) also made the list.

Ranking baseball prospects is a sport unto itself with many participants. You can read BP’s take on each of those guys here.

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“Vin Scully Avenue?” Los Angeles City Council member proposes renaming street.

Vin Scully

Vin Scully, 87, has said that 2016 will probably be his last year in the Dodgers’ broadcast booth. (Keith Birmingham/Staff photographer)

The idea of renaming one of the streets around Dodger Stadium after Hall of Fame broadcaster Vin Scully isn’t new, but an idea by itself only goes so far.

Los Angeles City Council member Gilbert Cedillo has formally proposed that the portion of Elysian Park Avenue from Sunset Blvd. to Stadium Way be renamed “Vin Scully Avenue.” It’s a necessary first step for the idea to become reality.

In his motion filed Tuesday, Cedillo writes:

The Dodgers announced on August 28, 2015 that Scully would be back for the 2016 season, his 67th with the Dodgers. At a press conference August 29, Scully said 2016 would probably be his final year.

In light of Vin Scully’s remarkable and unprecedented career with the Los Angeles Dodgers, it is appropriate that the name of a portion of Elysian Park Avenue from Sunset Boulevard to Dodger Stadium Way be legally changed to “Vin Scully Avenue.”

I THEREFORE MOVE that the City Engineer be directed to begin the process of changing the name of Elysian Park Avenue from Sunset Boulevard to Dodger Stadium Way to “Vin Scully Avenue.”

The news was ironically overshadowed a bit by the Dodgers’ own civic activities during the team’s annual community caravan. Tuesday, manager Dave Roberts was commended by the County Board of Supervisors for becoming the Dodgers’ first minority manager. On Wednesday, the team held a private event in San Bernardino — attended by outfielder Andre Ethier, special advisor Tommy Lasorda, Steve Garvey and others — to support law enforcement officials and families affected by the recent mass shooting in the city.

When Los Angeles mayor Eric Garcetti floated the idea of renaming a street after Scully in 2013, Scully said he didn’t like the idea.

Now, we’ll see what the City Council has to say.


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