Dec 142013

Clubhouse favorite and recent fan favorite Juan Uribe has agreed to a 2-Year $15 million dollar contract with the Dodgers. uribe_juan

The pudgy, lovable Uribe was solid defensively in 2013 at the hot corner after two years of injury riddled seasons. This is a great signing for the Dodgers as they didn’t have to dip into their nearly depleted farm system in a trade, kept a low risk, short term contract and added little payroll to their bottomless pit of cash.

This move isn’t just about Uribe, as it is about top prospect Corey Seager, the brother of INF Kyle Seager of Seattle. The infielder is still a couple seasons away from being big league ready, but when September call-ups or injury come up Uribe should be a fine mentor to Seager. By that time, Uribe would likely be at the very end of his career, making it a perfect transition to hand over the position.

Michael Young was also rumored to be an option at third, but that seemed to be a bit of a ploy to encourage Juan to make the move to the Dodgers, where he is very well liked. It certainly doesn’t hurt that the Dodgers are post-season favorites, as opposed to the Marlins or White Sox, who were also interested in the soon to be 35 year old.

With the starting infield position locked, the Dodgers will now focus on their bench. After seeing Skip Schumaker fly to the Reds and Nick Punto to the A’s, the Dodgers are still working with Mark Ellis, perhaps Michael Young, the latter of the two has experience at third base.

The debate of Hanley Ramirez who is looking at an extension this year, to be moved to third base is now over. Dee Gordon offers some good trade bait and has proven he is all but ready to take even a backup short stop position given his poor fielding ability. To me, Mark Ellis seems like a logical signing. Veteran player, great clubhouse guy and can really handle both middle infield positions. Hanley is injury prone, so someone familiar with the position needs to be available, it should only be a matter of time before terms are made.

Mar 252013

It was four days ago when the Dodgers dropped the bombshell that Hanley Ramirez’s right thumb will require surgery, putting him out for at least the next 60 days. The Dodgers starting shortstop tore a ligament in his thumb last Tuesday while playing for the Dominican Republic in its victory over Puerto Rico. I remember recently saying I wasn’t a big fan of nine Dodger players playing in the World Baseball Classic. I’m all for the games, I just feel they shouldn’t be played right before the start of the MLB season. That’s a topic for another day though.

Despite losing Hanley for the first third of the 2013 season, Ned Colletti says he won’t be looking for infield help while Hanley goes through the recovery process. Dylan Hernandez also confirmed that Colletti has recently reconfirmed that he has no plans to re-start his pursuit of free agent third baseman Scott Rolen.

Should the Dodgers kick the tires on the trade market, Elvis Andrus, Asdrubal Cabrera, Jemile Weeks, Jose Altuve, Chase Headley and Emilio Bonifacio have all had rumors connected to them over the last couple months. While it’s highly unlikely that any of the above players are moved in the coming weeks, it’s still worth noting that a few of the above players could help the Dodgers out for both their immediate short-term need and more.

With the surplus of Dodger infielders already under guaranteed contracts I fully expect Colletti to run with his internal options, at least for the time being. Luis Cruz will likely remain at third, but the possibility of a brief move to short exists. This would force the Dodgers to rely on Nick Punto and Juan Uribe to handle duties at third. Not a huge fan of either one of those guys playing every day for eight weeks. My preferred method, Dee Gordon, although according to Steve Dilbeck of the Los Angeles Times, “it’s hard to imagine that’s the direction they will go.” Which in my opinion is completely understandable after a subpar 2012 season in which Gordon posted a .228/.280/.281 line. Still, I feel like Gordon would be better than Uribe or Punto, at least Gordon would be playing with a “something to prove” attitude.

Opening Day is just days away and if you are looking for Dodgers tickets, it’s not too late. It sure would be nice to see anyone other than Juan Uribe starting at the hot corner come April, 1. Though I’m not sure  the other options of Justin Sellers, Skip Schumaker, and Jerry Hairston Jr. are all that much better. I definitely see them being in the mix and all three are better options than Uribe, but wait there’s more! My plan B, Elian Herrera, yeah I’m a big fan of Elian, he’s had a great spring, yet no mention of his name to fill in for Hanley. What’s up with that? I was lobbying for him to take a permanent roster spot for most of the 2012 season, seems I will be doing much of the same in 2013. At least the kid plays with heart, something Juan Uribe can’t say these days.

 03/25/2013  Posted by at 9:02 pm Dodgers News, Dodgers Rumors No Responses »
Feb 222013

The Dodgers bench is looking bleak offensively for the 2013 season. Unless something of the miracle type happens during the spring, the Dodgers bench is not looking very impressive. Juan Uribe, Jerry Hairston, Skip Schumaker, Nick Punto, and Tim Federowicz just don’t scream or even whisper “offensive threat” off the bench to me. First of all, the Dodgers bench is of the ripened variety, especially with Federowicz removed from the equation. The Dodgers need to get younger and more offensive focused on the bench. Sure our bench can play a solid defense, but when you need a big hit off the bench I wouldn’t exactly want to trust any one of these guys. In fact, I would take Elian Herrera over any one of these guys any day of the week. Speaking of Elian, what ever happened to him? He got buried by Juan Uribe and Jerry Hairston. Yuck. Hopefully he can make a statement this spring.

Notice anything glaring wrong with the picture? No backup first baseman? Ding-ding-ding! Apparently Juan Uribe is going to get the first crack at winning the job, but unless I’m mistaken he has never played a single game at first base. Even if he has, Uribe can’t hit a baseball all that well these days, and I don’t really want to see him getting more opportunities to prove to us what we already know.

Enter Casper Wells, currently buried on the Seattle Mariners depth chart. Wells, 28, is a solid option to help get the Dodgers bench going in the right direction. Wells plays first base and all three outfield spots, with above average defense too. Casper has been playing great outfield defense at SafeCo Field, and he possesses a strong arm to boot. Not the greatest of basestealers but he has decent speed, that’s for sure.

But wait, this is where it gets good, Casper, he has power, having clubbed 25 home runs and 29 doubles in 656 career plate appearances in the big leagues with Detroit and Seattle since the start of the 2010 season. Wells also posted a respectable .698 OPS in 2012, and his career mark is .752. He’s has shown to be a good hitter with men in scoring position to this point, with a career .865 OPS in those situations. Add two outs to the equation and the number jumps up to a very impressive career OPS average of .953, not too shabby. That is leaps and bounds better than any of our current bench options, but you already guessed that I’m sure.

Not only is he a solid right-handed bench option, he could also help give situational rest to guys like Carl Crawford, Andre Ethier, and Adrian Gonzalez, that could get him some decent playing time. Topping it all off, Casper was one of the best right-handed situational hitters in the league last season. So why with all this information and data is Casper on the outside looking in? I honestly have no clue. I thought for sure he’d have an everyday job this season. That doesn’t appear to be the case, perhaps the time to strike a deal has come.

Casper Wells isn’t perfect, trust me, I know. He strikes out quite a bit and I don’t see him being an MVP anytime soon, or ever. But he has a very nice skillset, is a low cost, relatively young option and he would fit in to the Dodgers current scheme quite nicely. I don’t see him costing much to acquire, my guess is the Mariners would take Chris Capuano, Aaron Harang, or Ted Lilly straight up for him. Working out the financial aspect of the trade could be quite tricky. Either way you slice it the Dodgers need a 1B/OF, and the Mariners need a boost in their rotation and all three of those guys, if healthy, would do just that.

 02/22/2013  Posted by at 4:07 pm Dodgers Rumors, Thinking Blue No Responses »
Dec 122012

The Dodgers have designated Scott Van Slyke for assignment. The move was made earlier today to make room on the 40-man roster for the newly acquired Skip Schumaker.

This move left me and a lot of Dodger fans scratching their heads. Why? Because Van Slyke is one of the few options the Dodgers have to play first base and both outfield corner positions. The right-hander also possesses some power potential that could come in handy, as the Dodgers bench currently doesn’t have any.

Van Slyke , 26, wasn’t very impressive in the majors this year hitting a dismal .167/.196/.315 in 57 plate appearances for the boys in blue, his first shot at the show. In Triple-A, however, Van Slyke hit .327/.404/.578 with 18 homers in 411 Triple-A plate appearances this summer. So it seems odd to waste someone who still has some time on his prospect clock, and could be on the verge of breaking out. This move grows even more puzzling especially with Juan Uribe (aka giant waste of space) still clogging up the roster.

It’s also worth noting Scott has some good baseball blood running in his veins, as he is son of the long-time big leaguer Andy Van Slyke.

Speculation is growing that a trade could be in the works. Makes sense. Actually it’s the only logical explanation for this move at the moment. Word on the street is the Dodgers are talking a deal that would send Van Slyke and Chris Capuano to the Pittsburgh Pirates for Joel Hanrahan.

Who thinks Ned should pull the trigger?

 12/12/2012  Posted by at 9:35 pm Dodgers News, Dodgers Rumors, Transactions 4 Responses »
Nov 192012

When you think about bad contracts the Dodgers have made, you seem to pin point Juan Uribe. The Dodgers will have paid him by the end of his contract $21 million dollars. He is one of the most expensive bench players around the league. Honestly this guy is out of his golden days, and really was not worth $21 million, nor half of that. Let’s just hope the Ned doesn’t make another mistake like that. Here is an over view of his contract

2011 $5,000,000
2012 $8,000,000
2013 $8,000,000
 11/19/2012  Posted by at 9:05 pm Dodgers Rumors 5 Responses »