6:14pm: FanRag’s Jon Heyman tweets that Hatcher receives a $1.25MM salary next season (Twitter link).
4:25pm: SB Nation’s Chris Cotillo tweets that Van Slyke and the Dodgers agreed to a $1.325MM salary for 2017.
4:14pm: The Dodgers announced today that they’ve signed outfielder Scott Van Slyke and right-hander Chris Hatcher to one-year deals, thus avoiding arbitration with both players. Van Slyke is represented by agent James Kuzmich, while Hatcher is a client of Turner Gary Sports.
Van Slyke, 30, was limited to 52 games this past season due to back and wrist injuries. When healthy, he batted a disappointing .225/.292/.314 in 113 plate appearances. Van Slyke, however, has a nice track record as a complementary outfielder, having slashed .261/.349/.455 with 24 homers in 651 plate appearances from 2013-15. Most of the damage he’s done in his career has come against left-handed pitching, as he holds a career .845 OPS against southpaws as compared to a .678 OPS against right-handed pitching. MLBTR contributor Matt Swartz had projected Van Slyke for a $1.3MM salary in 2017.
Hatcher, 32 in January, was limited to 40 2/3 innings by an oblique injury in 2016 but struggled to a 5.53 ERA even when healthy enough to take the field. Hatcher’s velocity remained strong, though, as his fastball averaged just under 96 mph. He also averaged 9.5 K/9 with a solid 44.3 percent ground-ball rate. His walk rate spiked from 3.0 BB/9 in 2015 to 4.6 BB/9 in 2016, however, and he was exceptionally homer-prone (1.8 HR/9, 18.2 percent HR/FB ratio). In 95 innings from 2014-15, Hatcher logged a 3.51 ERA and posted a 105-to-25 K/BB ratio. Swartz projected him at $1.4MM.