Julio Urias, Corey Seager headline list of Dodgers’ 17 non-roster invitees to spring training.

Julio Urias

Prospect Julio Urias, 18, pitched one Cactus League inning for the Dodgers in 2014 and did not allow a runner to reach base. (Associated Press photo)

Eighteen-year-old pitching prospect Julio Urias has earned a non-roster invitation to the Dodgers’ 2015 spring training camp. He and top shortstop prospect Corey Seager headline a list of 17 non-roster invitees to the Dodgers’ spring training camp announced Friday.

Shortstop Erisbel Arruebarrena, who was designated for assignment nine days ago with four years remaining on his $25 million contract, is also in that group.

Here is the full list:
Continue reading

Dodgers designate Erisbel Arruebarrena for assignment, announce Brett Anderson signing.

The fact that Brett Anderson passed his physical and signed a contract with the Dodgers on Tuesday is noteworthy. When I asked Andrew Friedman before Christmas if Anderson’s physical would delay his contract longer than Matt Kemp’s, he laughed. Friedman might have been nervous. Anderson, after all, has had enough injuries during his career to qualify for an NFL pension, from a car accident in the minors to a bulging disk in his back last season.

That said, the biggest news of the day is that Erisbel Arruebarrena has been designated for assignment.

The Dodgers could afford to cut a middle infielder with Jimmy Rollins, Howie Kendrick, Darwin Barney, Justin Turner and Arruebarrena all in the picture. If Corey Seager is able to enter the picture in 2015, one of the five would certainly have to leave. This clears the way for that to happen soon — possibly in spring training.

The Dodgers are still responsible for Arruebarrena’s contract, which runs through 2018. He will collect his full $25 million somewhere, whether it’s in the minor leagues, on another team, or in Los Angeles.

If they cannot trade Arruebarrena, the Dodgers will likely send him to Triple-A, where he can earn his way back on to the major-league roster. For now, he’s off the roster and Anderson is in.

In case you noticed, teams don’t usually cut players with four years left on their contract. But Friedman has demonstrated over the last month that he is not afraid to thwart conventional thinking to mold a roster however he wants. Brian Wilson, Matt Kemp, Dan Haren and possibly others will collect paychecks from the Dodgers next year and never play a game for them.

That won’t matter a great deal to fans if the Dodgers win a World Series. It will be the first thing they point out if the Dodgers fall short.

 

Two thoughts on the Dodgers’ 2015 roster.

It’s going to take more than one story or one blog entry to grasp the full scope of what’s happened to the Dodgers roster since the end of the season. I wrote this today. It’s a start. Mostly, it’s a look ahead to what the 2015 Dodgers could look like. What changes could happen between now and then?

Two thoughts.

Continue reading

On Corey Seager and the Dodgers’ pursuit of a shortstop.

Corey Seager

Corey Seager is expected to be in the Dodgers’ major-league camp when spring training begins. (Staff photo)


SAN DIEGO — I touched on the Dodgers’ pursuit of a shortstop in today’s Winter Meetings notebook, but general manager Farhan Zaidi offered more to say than I had room in print.

So, about Hanley Ramirez’s replacement …
Continue reading

Reports: Hanley Ramirez will sign with Boston Red Sox.

Hanley Ramirez

Hanley Ramirez batted .283 with 13 home runs and 71 RBIs in 2014. (Getty Images)

Hanley Ramirez was not expected to return to Los Angeles in 2015. Andrew Friedman’s decision to let him sign elsewhere was going to save the Dodgers a lot of money wherever Ramirez signed, but it was not terribly difficult. The Dodgers had good reason not to give Ramirez a multi-year contract, and Ramirez did not reject the Dodgers’ qualifying offer only to sign a one-year deal somewhere else.

The Boston Red Sox had several reasons to take an interest in Ramirez. They have a designated hitter, David Ortiz, who turned 39 on Tuesday and can become a free agent after the 2015 season. They have their shortstop of the future, Xander Bogaerts, already in place. They have a glaring need for offense at third base (Boston third basemen had a .580 OPS last season, 14th in the American League).

They also draft seventh in next year’s entry draft. Only the teams that draft 1-10 are able to sign a player who rejected a qualifying offer and keep their pick, so the Red Sox had more incentive than some teams to make a big pitch.

Soon, it appears, they will have Ramirez under contract for next season and beyond:


Continue reading

Report: Dodgers haven’t ruled out re-signing Hanley Ramirez.

Hanley Ramirez

Hanley Ramirez batted .283 with 13 home runs and 71 RBIs in 2014. (Getty Images)

The Dodgers have not ruled out re-signing Hanley Ramirez, according to SBNation.com. Ramirez rejected the Dodgers’ qualifying offer Nov. 10 and is currently a free agent.

Continue reading

Why Erisbel Arruebarrena — who can’t swing — didn’t pinch run for A.J. Ellis earlier.

Erisbel Arruebarrena

Erisbel Arruebarrena was limited to pinch-running duties Wednesday because of a shoulder injury. (Getty Images)

In the 10th inning, when A.J. Ellis drew a one-out walk in a tie game, many of you chimed in on social media wondering why Don Mattingly didn’t pinch run for the slow-footed catcher.

Mattingly did use a pinch runner eventually, when the bases were loaded with one out. Erisbel Arruebarrena took Ellis’ place at third base, and barely had to move as Adrian Gonzalez and Juan Uribe struck out.
Continue reading

First wave of Dodgers call-ups arrive, sans Carlos Triunfel (designated for assignment).

Alex Guerrero

Alex Guerrero hit four home runs in his final 10 games with Triple-A Albuquerque. (Associated Press photo)

Of all the transactions the Dodgers made Monday, when rosters were allowed to expand past the previous 25-man limit, only one could be considered a surprise.

Infielder Carlos Triunfel, whom the Dodgers claimed off waivers from the Seattle Mariners in April, was designated for assignment.

By removing Triunfel from the 40-man roster, the Dodgers were able to add Joc Pederson to their 40-man roster. Pederson was joined by infielder Alex Guerrero, catcher Tim Federowicz and pitcher Yimi Garcia on the Albuquerque-to-Los Angeles express Monday. Infielders Miguel Rojas and Erisbel Arruebarrena and pitcher Carlos Frias are expected to arrive in the Dodgers’ clubhouse tomorrow.

Pederson and Garcia will be making their major-league debuts.

Continue reading