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Healthy Larry Bigbie as Trade Bait

The biggest story so far out of Dodgers' Spring Training is the resurgence of Larry Bigbie. In two and a half games, Bigbie is 5-5 with 6 RBIs and two HRs (three including an intra-squad game). While the sampling size is extremely miniscule, it's enough to show that he's healthy and draw interest from scouts in the stands.

Bigbie, a former first-round draft pick for Baltimore, signed a minor-league contract early in February which includes an opt-out clause if the Dodgers keep him in the minors. Unless Marlon Anderson's elbow injury creates a hole for Bigbie on the opening day roster, he could become trade bait for any club looking for a left-handed OF bat off the bench.

By Jacob Burch

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I was just wondering what effect the opt-out clause he has would play. If a team were to offer him a major league contract, could the Dodgers do anything to prevent it?

You can't offer someone a contract when they are under contract for another team. It's against the rules of the MLB.

I believe you can offer them a major league contract, if they are currently under a minor league contract. Whether or not this is a special case or not, I'm not sure.

The specifics of the opt-out cloud are a bit cloudy, but the basics are:

Both the OC register (via mercury news) and the LA times describe it as applicable if he does not make the opening day roster:
http://www.mercurynews.com/mld/mercurynews/sports/16823350.htm
http://www.latimes.com/sports/printedition/la-sp-dodrep3mar03,1,3946319.story?coll=la-headlines-pe-sports

LA times also notes that the clause would become active during the last week of spring training (presumably, after the 25-man roster is announced):
http://www.latimes.com/sports/la-spw-dodgers28feb28,1,4688692.story?coll=la-headlines-sports&track=crosspromo

Remeber What happen with J.D drew. The other team just wont come publcally and say we want so exercise and we will give you tons of money. They will go behind doors and do their business. It happens all the team. Like guys on their final year that might talk about an extension some other team might come along and sya will pay u double so dont sign right now.


On another note how many guys have had great spring traing and get traded to successive year with the other team?

"Remeber What happen with J.D drew. The other team just wont come publcally and say we want so exercise and we will give you tons of money. They will go behind doors and do their business. It happens all the team. Like guys on their final year that might talk about an extension some other team might come along and sya will pay u double so dont sign right now."

That's illegal and you have no proof of that. JD Drew is very talented and many teams would be interested if he were to ever hit the FA market. A team can get in a lot of trouble for it and I'm sure they go to great measures to protect themselves from being accused of it. Teams can grant another team a 72-hour window to discuss an extension before a trade occurs, but that's as far as it goes with teams talking to another teams' players about contracts.

beeniez:

Your comment while it's true there is no proof of tampering with Drew, it is very naive to think that there was not something behind the scenes. Given Drew's health history it is more likely the two years with the Dodgers were an abboration due to being handled with kid-gloves rather then him being healthy.

If you look at Drew last season. He was hurt but did not disclose it. Given that he chose to opt-out that means he knew something was up and needed to show he could play. Drew was knew he was going to opt-out raght when the Didgers losing streak began after the ASB. The deal was already in the works. How oftern do Boras clients sign that fast? It is not his style of representation. He drags thing out to distraction. This deal was done before October.

Drew is NOT a gamer and is not a player who will play through an injury. Plus is does really get hurt. I don;t think he ever faked injury but I think he might have stretched them out a couple times. He likes his DL time. It's relaxing.

I was in no way sad the day I read he exercised the opt-out clause. He will be a nice fit hitting 6th (or so) in the BoSox's order. But I doubt he will last 100 games. He will be out mid-June or early July at the latest. He is simply not that tough minded and fragile.

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As for Bigbie I imagine that if he can continue this another week the Dodgers might begin to consider him over Anderson. He is cheaper and older and broken right now. Anderson though can play more positions though so I imagine it will be an interesting call in the end. Of course Bigbie might not get another hit all pre-season. ;)

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