The team-issued, season-long suspension of Dodgers minor league shortstop Erisbel Arruebarrena has been reduced to 30 days, reports Craig Calcaterra of NBC Sports’ Hardball Talk. Citing Arruebarrena’s attorney, Jay Reisinger, Calcaterra adds that an appeal to the commissioner’s office was filed on behalf of Arruebarrena, and the two sides ultimately reached a settlement.
The 25-year-old Arruebarrena had originally been suspended for the season due to “repeated failures to comply with his contract,” although his exact transgressions were never reported. Because it was a team-issued suspension, however, performance-enhancing drugs can be ruled out, and drugs of abuse can likely be crossed off the list as well.
Arruebarrena signed a five-year, $25MM contract with the Dodgers upon defecting from Cuba. Said at the time to be a brilliant defensive infielder with a questionable bat, Arruebarrena batted .259/.304/.417 across four minor league levels with the Dodgers in 2014 before surfacing at the Major League level. True to the scouting reports, he struggled at the plate in 45 appearances, batting just .195/.244/.220.
Arruebarrena has already reported to the Dodgers’ Spring Training facility in Arizona to resume baseball activities and begin baseball activities. The decision doesn’t seem to dramatically increase the likelihood that Arruebarrena will appear in a Dodgers’ uniform in the near future, as there’s still likely some bad blood between the player and the organization. From a financial standpoint, the reduced suspension carries some ramifications for the Dodgers. Had Arruebarrena spent the entire season serving a suspension, he wouldn’t have earned his $3MM salary. With that reduced to 30 days, Arruebarrena is now “only” out $491K, meaning the Dodgers will still have to pay him a little more than $2.5MM of his salary.