6:06pm: The Dodgers have now announced that Guerrero has indeed been designated for assignment.
2:44pm: The Dodgers are expected to designate utilityman Alex Guerrero for assignment, according to J.P. Hoornstra of the Los Angeles News Group (via Twitter), though the transaction remains unannounced. Guerrero’s rehab assignment for a knee injury is set to wrap up today, forcing the team to make a decision on his roster status.
Los Angeles has long been in a tight spot with the 29-year-old, whose international free agent contract allows him to reject an optional assignment. Plus, if he’s traded, Guerrero would be able to elect free agency in the winter following the deal, which limits his future control rights for potential trade partners.
There doesn’t appear to be much of a fit for Guerrero on the present L.A. roster. While he has seen MLB action in the corner outfield and third base, and spent most of his career in Cuba in the middle infield, he’s generally regarded as a subpar fielder. And the Dodgers already have plenty of versatile options settled in at those positions.
Guerrero has shown promise at times with the bat, though he faded after a hot start last year and ended up with a .233/.261/.434 slash and 11 home runs in 230 plate appearances. And he hasn’t helped himself with his recent performance. After tearing up the minors in his first trip through the system, Guerrero owns a meager .136/.162/.197 batting line in his 68 plate appearances on his rehab stint this season.
With little in the way of future value, not much of a track record, a lack of a clear defensive position, and a relatively hefty $5MM salary, it’s not difficult to see why other organizations haven’t jumped at the chance to add Guerrero. Ultimately, it seems that the Dodgers will have little to show for the $28MM they guaranteed him back in October of 2013. The club has also struck out thus far on Erisbel Arruebarrena, a fellow Cuban signed just months later to a $25MM deal. Of course, the Dodgers have been far more successful with several other large international expenditures.
LA can waste money on a bum like this but cannot spend any money to upgrade their pen?
I believe this was before the current owners.
No, current owners. Different GM.
The Dodgers have frustrated me a lot this way since Friedman took over.
Ned Coletti was a silly GM, speanding a ton on the SAVEZ, but it’s possible to get too far in the other direction.
Since Friedman took the team no reliever has signed over $3m per. Hatcher, Johnson, and Avilan are the only ones acquired with a significant trade asset, and each was a part of a far larger package and either terrible or inconsistent.
Yet the team can buy Kendrick and other depth at positions and the starting rotation and expensive cash for prospect trades. They could have had Andrew Miller last season or any of the MANY relievers better than any on the team but Jansen.
They did push for Darren O’Day, but he chose not to sign there for family reasons.
Who did you want them to spend money on?
I can answer that question: quality middle relief.
This is the difference between the Dodgers of the world and the Rays of the world. The Dodgers can afford to spend a ridiculous amount of money on guys like Guerrero and Arruebarrena and not blink if they don’t work out. Smaller market teams (a) can’t compete in the initial bidding and (b) can’t afford a roster crippling mistake on such a player.
The A’s signed cespedes, reds got chapman, white sox abreu, cardinals got diaz, leonys Martin to the rangers, rasiel Iglesias to the reds, yasmany Tomas to the dbacks. Sure it’s a risk, but so are free agents.
Or the Giants. They can paper over massive mistakes with a massive payroll. Zito, Rowand, Lowry, Scutaro, Cain, Winn, McGehee…they can afford to screw up in ways other teams just can’t
Except it’s miles between the Dodgers and 3rd in payroll Boston (45 million, or roughly the payroll of the Brewers). Sure the top 10 have a notable advantage over the bottom 10, but the Dodgers spending is currently in a class of it’s own.
Except that a huge portion of the Dodger largesse is related to development, prospects, etc.
Surprisingly little of the money is contributing on the field.
Kershaw $30m Gonzalez $40 [because Crawford was essentially the price for Gonzalez] stand out. Pederson, Seager, Puig, Grandal, Turner, Utley are cheap. The majority of the pitchers.
Just to say that the spending is large but involves VERY little traditional expenditure on the free agent market like San Francisco going out and getting Samardzija and Cueto.
For Vin’s last season I am rather salty the team did not spend on a top starter and reliever.
Could throw Angel Pagan and Jake Peavy into that list too.
Buy a bullpen LA. It’s like driving a car with only 3 wheels right now with that bullpen.
I wish the Angels could have this guy, but we’re at the threshold
Another one bites the dust!!!!
Another Cuban League bust…..a real bargain for $28 Million.
Bet Ben Badler is proud……I bet the scouting report part about being a “sub par fielder” never made the reports.
Stand fast Dodgers fans…..Dodger Dogs are going up in price!
Just like many players in the amateur draft who bust as well. They don’t make nearly as much money, but who do you expect to end up better, a Cuban making 25 over 5 years, or a high first rounder?
It seems international “bust” rates are in line with local prospect “bust” rates. For every first rounder who makes it, there are 4 who don’t.
Good point, and with $5M a year being about the MLB salary average, Guerrero was pretty much a garden-variety bust. Guerrero could refuse assignment but he’d be nuts if he did.
Absolutely agreed all round.
It’s a shame he can’t play any position.
At least he’ll make some good coin while he buses in OKC.
This guy will be a starting outfielder for the Padres.
If the Dodgers really have the financial might everybody says they do they would release Crawford too and eat the 50 million in contracts
I think they’ll do that when if their other left handed hitting option(ethier) ever gets off the DL.
I get the feeling an international scout was overhyping these prospects and likely getting a cut of their salaries somehow. I don’t know how else you could explain such waste.
That seems a little far-fetched – nearly every team sent its own scouts to watch him play and many bid on him. No team would spend that kind of money on a player without its own scouts checking him out.
Guerrero and Olivera had the same agent with a bad reputation.
He was doing well last year, then Mattingly took away his time and his results dwindled. Not saying he would’ve kept up that pace, but some support there may have helped him maintain confidence.
He had one good month, then the pitchers found the holes in his swing. Either way it seems likely the Dodgers will get another chance to see some results from him in the minors. Nobody will claim him and he’d out of his mind to opt out.
He was sitting dead read fastballs and got a healthy number of dead read fastballs. Then pitchers made an adjustment. Sure you can stick with a kick and allow him to make adjustments if he can pick it or provide some semblance of defense. The fact is defensively he’s not very good, and that’s putting it mildly. Can he develop as a hitter probably but on a team where he can dh and or play 1st. But he can refuse assignment and then the Dodgers will be forced to cut bait meaning he will still collect all of it. And an al team will probably come calling.
I believe if he refuses assignment then the contract is voided, he forfeits the balance and becomes a free agent.
He actually looked passible at 3B, but if he can’t hit a lick, it hardly matters.
It doesn’t void the contract. Everyone wishes it would. That was the only leverage he had at the signing. The option only comes into affect if he was traded. His signing was of the major league type because of his international playing experience and age. So unlike others he gets the privileges equivalent to a player who had put in 6 years of service.
It wasn’t the only leverage, he also got the unusual trade protection clause. You are correct in that his contract otherwise looks like any other major league contract or a player with over five years of service time. Yes, he can refuse assignment, but that makes him a free agent. It doesn’t pay him the balance of what he’d be owed, the same as if he accepted the assignment. If it worked the way you say he’d have declined the DFA already because he’d have no reason to do any other thing.
If what you said was true the Dodgers certainly would have DFA him when roster space was demanded in the previous season and every overpaid player would get DFA immediately.
That’s pretty much what the teams do today. The DFA exposes the player to a waiver claim, so teams will continue to use the DFA on players with contracts they are pretty certain no other team will want. They don’t do this with every overpaid player because the DFA also removes them from the 40-man roster.
The Dodgers have not DFA’d Crawford for example because he would get his money either way.
Because he has more than five years of MLB service time. It’s unclear if Guerrero’s contract treats him as if he was a full five year veteran. He was signed as an amateur free agent and has only about a year total service time. Players in that situation when DFA’d are faced with the option of accepting the assignment or voiding their contract and becoming a free agent. Either way we should know soon but for now I would say he hasn’t got the option of a five-year guy or he’d have taken the money and run by now. Don’t think he needs to wait out the 10-day waiver window.
I think what we are missing is the semantics. He contract states that he can’t be optioned to the minor without his consent. So he can refuse assignment. If he’s doesn’t elect free agency he will still get paid because the Dodgers can’t send him to the minors. So it then forces the Dodgers hand to release or trade him. If he elects free agency immediately which he won’t, he would forfeit the remaining. If he doesn’t elect free agency then the stipulations in his contract comes into play. It was the same situation Baltimore ran into with Kim. Keep him on your roster, try and convince him to go to the minors, or eat the money left.
You may be right, but I think what is really missing here is what it says in Guerrero’s contract. His situation might be more like Brandon Beachy, who signed a MLB contract with less than five years of service time. He could refuse assignment and become a free agent but at the expense of voiding the balance of his contract. He’s accepted the assignment, twice already, for that reason. So what it comes down to is whether Guerrero’s contract gives him five year rights. That’s something we really don’t know. I’m thinking not because he hasn’t refused the assignment yet and I don’t believe he has to wait ten days to do so.
He seems like a potential Billy Beane pick up. Alonso is doing nothing, and Guerrero might end up being an average glove at 1B
After he rejects the assignment, his release will be granted from the Dodgers and he can then play for the league minimum for any team with a open roster spot that might try catching lightning in a bottle.
Speaking of Guerrero, has Carl Crawford made solid contact yet this year?
May be a good fir for the Mets. Can spell Wright and Conforto against tough lefties