On Wednesday the Los Angeles Dodgers made another significant move by trading right hander John Ely to the Houston Astros for former UCLA pitcher Rob Rasmussen.
This is a home coming of sorts for Rasmussen who grew up in Arcadia, played his high school baseball at Pasadena Poly and continued his collegiate career at UCLA.
Ironically back in 2007, the Dodgers drafted Rasmussen in the 27th round of the amateur draft, but elected to attend UCLA.
Rasmussen was selected by the Miami Marlins this time in the second round of the 2010 amateur draft and then traded to Houston on July 2012 as part of the trade that sent an unhappy Carlos Lee to Miami and away from the Astros.
John Ely who was acquired in a trade in 2009 with the Chicago White Sox. Ely went a disappointing 4-13 with a 5.25 ERA in 25 games over three seasons with the Dodgers.
In three minor league seasons, Rasmussen 20-21 with a 3.88 ERA in 60 games that included 53 starts.
The Dodgers have 39 players on their 40 man roster.
Look for the Dodgers to continued tweaking their roster over the course of this off season.
The Los Angeles Dodgers continue to improve their line up, by completing a trade with the St. Louis Cardinals for infielder/ outfielder Skip Schumaker according to the L.A. Times. He spent eight seasons with the Cards hitting .276 with 1 home run and 28 RBIs.
He’s expected to give the Dodgers so much needed help in the infield possibly at second base and in the out field in case Carl Crawford isn’t ready by opening day.
Schumaker is scheduled to make $1.5 million this season, and there has been no word on who the Cards will receive in return at this time. He is set to be a free agent next season.
The Dodgers are certainly making moves to win no only right now but for several years to come.
Its about forward movement not digression, and for the Los Angeles Dodgers trading Andre Either would mean a significant upgrade. Anything less would be as they say uncivilized. The Dodgers gave a contract extension to Either for five years at $85 million to ensure that Kemp and Either would remain in the lineup together.
The reports that made some noise earlier during the off season, have surfaced once again this time only a little louder than before. The Dodgers have said that there is zero chance that he gets traded but will listen to offers. My question is if you’re willing to listen, then that contradicts what was said as it relates to the zero chance theory.
There has been talk of many players for Either, and one in particular has been Nick Swisher. Swisher is a good player, but he hit .196 in the playoffs, and if the New York Yankees got rid of him shouldn’t that tell us something?
The only trade I could see and the one that would make the most sense is a Either for Michael Bourn deal.
Bourn is an exciting, young player who has a nice upside and could provide the Dodgers with a healthy spring in the outfield line up.
Bourne is one of the top free agent position player available since Josh Hamilton signed with the Angels last week. After rejecting the Atlanta Braves qualifying offer, many teams are interested in Bourn such as the Yankees, A’s, Reds, Nationals, and the rival Giants.
Other than the Yankees, the Dodgers have the best offer to attract and acquire Bourn if they so choose. Bourn hit .274 last season with a career high nine home runs to go along with 42 stolen bases and a .739 OPS (on-base plus slugging percentage). Proven to be one of the game’s top base stealer and exceptional outfielder defensively, he has all the tools to help a contending team win many games.
This Dodgers front office is often times hard to read, however for now it will look as though Either will in the starting line up come Opening Day.
However if they are going to trade Either now would be the time, especially before he gets injured again.
After several days of speculation during last week’s Winter Meetings, the Los Angeles Dodgers remained relatively quiet. There were updates from GM Ned Colletti on the status of signing free agent pitcher Zack Greinke. Stating that the Dodgers were interested to they weren’t even in the neighborhood of capturing the highly ansticipated superstar.
After many meetings with the Dodgers that included a formal visit to the ownership from Greinke himself without any agents or media, Saturday was the day they locked up their pitcher for the next six years at $147 million pending a physical.
On Monday, Dodger partner Earvin “Magic” Johnson revealed that Greinke had passed his physical and the press conference to introduced their latest star would take place on Tuesday at Dodger Stadium.
Greinke’s new deal is the highest deal for a right handed pitcher in Major League Baseball. That deal along with Sunday’s signing of Korean lefty Hyun-jin Ryu, sent the Dodgers payroll just north of $225 million for the 2013 season.
Both Greinke and Ryu are welcomed by the Dodgers who fill the void of depth on the pitching rotation. Greinke and Ryu join 2011 Cy Young winner and ace Clayton Kershaw, Josh Beckett who was acquired during last season in a trade with the Boston Red Sox. Along with Chad Billingsley, Ted Lilly who’s recovering from shoulder surgery, Chris Capuano, and Aaron Harang. There has been talk of trading either Capuano, Harang or both to boost their infield possibly.
The abundant spending of the Dodgers during this off season could be traced to their upcoming new television deal with either FOX Sports or Time Warner that may be worth as much as $6 billion. Which will provide a substantial return on the $2.15 billion the Guggenheim Baseball Group purchased the team from former owner Frank McCourt.
Greinke who was drafted in 2002 by the Kansas City Royal, won the AL Cy Young Award in 2009 under then manager Troy Hillman. Ironically Hillman is the bench coach for the Dodgers and was able to give extensive insight on Greinke’s talents which aided the team signing him.
After being trade to the Milwaukee Brewers in 2010, a year later Greinke went 16-6 with a 3.83 ERA. He also won his first 11 starts at home after coming off the disabled list due to a rib injury at the beginning of that season.
In 2012 he was an outstanding 15-5 with 3.46 ERA before he was traded to the Los Angeles Angels.
Greinke is often a quiet guy who does most of his talking on the mound as the power pitcher that he is, and adds bulk to any line-up that he’s apart of. One of the main reason the Dodgers aggressively went after Greinke and won his services over the Texas Rangers.
No matter how “weird” Greinke may be, all that counts is that he remains with the winning competitive attitude that he has had since the beginning of his career. Other teams have been put on notice especially the World Series champion San Francisco Giants, this Dodger team is ready for combat this season.
The Los Angeles Dodgers were given a 2pm deadline by super sports agent Scott Boris for his client pitcher Hyun-Jin Ryu to be signed. After the blockbuster signing of pitcher Zack Greinke on Saturday night, the Dodgers made the move to add Ryu to their roster.
Ryu pronounced He-YUN Jin Ree-YOO, pitched 190 games for the Hanwha Eagles of the Korea Baseball League had a 2.50 ERA with a 98-52 record. The 6 foot 1, 200 pound pitcher went 9-9 and was ranked fifth in the league with a 2.66 ERA. His sharp and unique pitching style held opposing batters .232 batting average with a career high of 210 strikeouts.
Dodgers GM Ned Colletti expressed his joy of having Ryu apart of the Dodger staff, “we are excited to welcome Hyun-Jin Ryu to Los Angeles and the United States. Continuing the tradition of Korean pitchers with the Dodger organization. The Dodgers continue to show the commitment to signing players from Asia and other international areas where baseball is played at the highest levels. Waiting to watch Ryu pitch for the team.”
Ryu made 14 appearances internationally, picked up a gold medal in the 2008 Beijing Olympics as a member of the South Korean baseball team. He also earned a silver medal while pitching in the 2009 Baseball Classic.
When Ryu debuts for the team in 2013, he will just the fourth Korean pitcher behind Dodgers behind Hee-Seop Choi, Jae Seo, and Chan Ho Park. Park debuted in Major League Baseball (MLB) for the Dodgers in 1994. He earned an All-Star selection in 2001, when he finished third in the National League with a career-high 218 strikeouts.
“Congratulations to the Dodgers and Ryu on this great signing. I’m excited to see him carry on the tradition of great international pitchers in Dodger blue and have Ryu represent Korean baseball in the United States,” said Park.
The Korean Baseball All-Star in all seven of his professional seasons from 2006-2012 and won the strikeout title five times, while holding the circuit’s single-game strikeout record 17 set on May 11, 2010 and averaging nearly a strikeout per inning with 1,238 Ks.
With the addition of Ryu definitely bulks up the pitching rotation that the Dodgers have searched for many years. The new line up will now consist of Clayton Kershaw, Zack Greinke, Josh Beckett, Chad Billingsley.
The Dodgers will also look to move Aaron Harang, and possibly Chris Capuano via trades before the time for pitchers and catcher report for Spring Training.
One of the most sought after free agent pitchers this off season is Los Angeles Angels Zack Greinke who finished up his stint with the club this past season.
Greinke is reportedly looking to sign a huge six year $150 million contract, which has started a bidding war between the Los Angeles Dodgers and Angels.
With the recent reports that the Angels are looking to shed their payroll tremendously, they may not have the capitol it takes to sign this valuable pitcher when the time arises.
The value of Greinke could rise as high as $175 million over a seven year deal according to some team sources during the Baseball Winter Meetings. If the Dodgers do end up winning the services of Greinke, this could have major implications on resigning their 2011 Cy Young Award winning ace Clayton Kershaw.
Kershaw will command top dollar on the free agent market in 2013.
However their is no need for Dodger fans to panic, especially when Guggenheim Group CEO Mark Walter promised to spend big this and next off-season.
Along with the possible $5 to $6 billion dollar television deal that the Dodgers will be signing soon, money will not be an issue to signing top talent.
Yes Kershaw would get a significantly larger contract than Greinke that could exceed $200 million. One reason Kershaw is a more defined and consistent pitcher than Greinke. The 25 year old Kershaw is coming off back to back seasons leading the National League in ERA’s. He also lead MLB in strikeouts and finished just one strikeout away from being the top pitcher in 2012. Kershaw almost captured two consecutive Cy Young awards, but finished a close second to New York Mets starter R.A. Dickey.
Greinke has also been fantastic, since he won his Cy Young award back in 2009. In the past two seasons Greinke has captured 200 strikeouts with a 31-11 record with a 3.66 ERA. In 2011 he actually lead the league with 10 strikeouts per nine innings.
The Dodgers adding Greinke would only strengthen their rotation behind Kershaw., who is one of the most if not the dominate pitcher in the National League. It also helps come contract time that Kershaw is a lefty which any team would extend themselves for his services. But fear not, the Dodgers will not allow this unique commodity escape their grip in Los Angeles.
By the time Kershaw is up for free agency, he’ll be four years younger than Greinke is now, which is a huge plus. Even if Kershaw signed an eight year deal, he wouldn’t be a free agent until he was about 32 years old. How much more seasoned will this phenomenal talent be at that time? Fortunately Los Angelinos will have the privilege of finding out first hand for several years to come hopefully.
If Greinke is granted the large contract, and Kershaw is given a larger contract in 2013, then Kershaw will be the highest paid pitch in Major League Baseball. Above are Yankees CC Sebathia, Phillies Cole Hammels who signed a six year $144 million deal. Followed by Johna Santana, Barry Zito and Cliff Lee are not far behind.
These type of blockbuster deals for pitchers is nothing especially with the recent contract of San Francisco Giants pitcher Matt Cain who now makes $127.5 million over six years.
If the Dodgers pull off this deal for Greinke, when its time for pitchers and catchers to report Spring Training Kershaw will have Greinke to thank in 2013.
The Dodgers could have the best rotation in the NL with Kershaw, Greinke, and Billingsley if all goes according to plan.
The Los Angeles Dodgers look to regroup as they underachieved at the end of the season despite their hot beginning.
In a blockbuster, multi-player trade with the Boston Red Sox that sent Adrian Gonzales, Josh Beckett, Nick Punto, and an injured Carl Crawford to the Dodgers, for James Loney, Rubby De La Rosa, Jerry Sands, Ivan DeJesus Jr., and Allen Webster. Crawford surfaced for the first time on Friday to greet the media at Dodger Stadium. The 31 year old 10 year veteran came to the Dodgers in the August 25 trade, but was still rehabbing from season ending elbow surgery.
In 2010 the former Tampa Bay Rays All-Star chose to sign with the Red Sox over several other teams for a seven year $142 million deal.
His team in Boston was not the way he pictured it along with the organization and their fans. It was so disappointing that Crawford actually took time to apologize not only to the organization but the fans as well. Crawford also recalled how he should’ve taken the advice of well renown surgeon Dr. James Andrews to have the surgery earlier this year than wait until August 24th. He reminded us of the pressure he felt playing in Boston, “a big deal is made about the money and I wanted to play for them. Maybe I should have taken care of myself. I felt pressure from the outside to play, in that atmosphere. You have surgery and you get looked at like you’re being soft or try to take the money. I wanted to prove that wasn’t the case and it probably cost me time from next year. It’s one of the things I definitely learned from.”
Crawford realized unlike his former manager Bobby Valentine that it was time for him to get out of town. “”If somebody wants to trade you, to get rid of you, it’s time to move on,” Crawford said of accepting the trade to the Dodgers. “Things didn’t go as planned in Boston. I’m happy for a new start. I just didn’t play well enough there, for whatever reason. It just didn’t work. I didn’t do my part.” So Crawford waived his no-trade clause and willing accepted a trade to Los Angeles to play in Dodgers blue for the remaining years left on his deal.
Crawford was excited for the fresh start with the Dodgers and allowed some insight on his rehab status. He explained that he was ahead of schedule, throwing balls and believes he’ll be ready in time for Spring Training in Arizona. He did say this his left wrist that he had surgery on last spring does flare up at times, however he’s watching it and will be careful when he’s at the plate.
Crawford sounded like the confident politician saying being with the Dodgers is a dream come true. That he’ll give the fans of Los Angeles something to watch next season. He hope his style of baseball power will transcend into the National League and with the Dodgers. “Once I start playing like I normally play, I won’t be the forgotten guy. I definitely have a lot of baseball left in me. It’s good to get a second chance,” Crawford said.
Like many Dodger fans, management hopes the Tampa Bay Crawford will emerge and help lead this team to championships. Tommy Lasorda met with Crawford earlier in the day reminded him of why he traded to the Dodgers, simply for championships.
The Dodgers increase the power in their line with the addition of Crawford and his .292 average will be a significant upgrade from Dee Gordon or even Shane Victorino. The Dodgers have a big decision to make on who will be in the infield with Hanley Ramirez, either Luis Cruz or Gordon.
When asked about Gordon’s role, GM Ned Colletti responded, “We’re not ruling out Dee Gordon, but we’re not anointing Dee Gordon either, we’ll see.”
Crawford is just two months removed from his Tommy John surgery and Matt Kemp is coming off successful surgery. Colletti is confident that the two players will in fact be ready for Opening Day in 2013.
With another year out of the playoffs, the Dodgers had nothing left to play for except pride and to build on something greater for the 2013 season. Clayton Kershaw had an opportunity to land back to back ERA titles. He’d be the second Dodger to achieve that milestone since the great Sandy Koufax from 1962-66.
“I don’t care. It was fun to get a win and hopefully build off these last nine games,” said Kershaw regarding the ERA title.
Kershaw had that playoff Cy Young gleam in his eye as he took the mound and began pitching in dominate fashion. Kershaw lost focus for a moment, giving up a single to Marco Scutaro. Pablo Sandoval doubled to deep left which advanced Scutaro to third base. Catcher Buster Posey hit a sacrifice ground out to shortstop that scored Scutaro for the 1-0 Giants lead in the top of the fourth inning.
The Dodgers struggled offensively, until Luis Cruz knocked out a single, and made it safe to first base thanks to an error by Scutaro. Tim Federowicz connected on a single to center. With two on base, Kershaw decided to aid his own cause by connected on a RBI single to right center that scored Cruz. Federowicz attempted to make it to third but was thrown out as the Dodgers tied the game 1-1 in the bottom of the fifth inning.
Giants manager Bruce Bouchy decided it was a good idea to bring in reliever Clay Hensley for starter Ryan Vogelsong. That decision would not help the Giants, as Andre Either doubled to deep right field. Adrian Gonzales continued on his 15 game hitting streak as he knocked in an RBI single that scored Either, and gave the Dodgers the 2-1 lead in the bottom of the sixth inning.
As Kershaw continued focused and poised in his dominate form, the Dodgers gave him the proper run support he needed. After Nick Punto popped out at third base, Alex Castellanos knocked out a solo home run that gave the Dodgers the 3-1 lead. They weren’t finished as Elian Herrera singled to left, then Juan Rivera decided to knock out a two run homer deep to center. Dodgers led 5-1 over the rival Giants.
After a great crowd applause for Calyton Kershaw, Kenley Jansen came in the ninth inning to close out the game. Jansen has been pretty spectacular all season, and Wednesday afternoon would be no different. After Jansen walked Aubrey Huff, Hector Sanchez flew out to right field. Then he struck out Francisco Peguero and Xavier Nady for the final out and season ending play at Dodger Stadium. Dodgers held on to defeat the NL West Champion San Francisco Giants 5-1, and took two out of three in the series.
Dodgers starter Clayton Kershaw (14-9) allowed one run and three hits in eight innings, struck out eight and walked three. He also finished with a league leading 2.53 ERA.
“He’s as good as anybody in the game. He loves pitching,” said Dodgers manager Don Mattingly.
“If we make the playoffs next season, it will be a great year. Not making the postseason, that’s what we play for,” said Kershaw.
Kenley Jansen picked up his 26th save for the season.
Dodgers slugger Matt Kemp is schedule to have surgery on Friday on his torn labrum in his left shoulder. The rehab process can be anywhere from four weeks to four months. “They’re going to see what’s going on inside of there and hopefully just clean it up, said Matt Kemp. “If they need to do more, they’ll do more, but I won’t know anything until I wake up.”
Giants reliever Clay Hensley (4-5) picked up the loss, and gave up one run, two hits in one inning. Giants starter Ryan Vogelsong pitched five innings, on seven strikeouts and two hits.
Kershaw also finished the season with 229 strikeouts, just one shy of New York Mets starter and NL leader R.A. Dickey.