Marlins release Greg Dobbs, flush away $1.7 million

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Back in September the Marlins signed Greg Dobbs to a one-year, $1.7 million contract extension that had people like me shaking their heads and now today they released the 35-year-old bench bat.

Dobbs had a grand total of 13 plate appearances this season, which means the Marlins a) completely changed their opinion of him in what would be three games worth of playing time for a starting player, and b) paid him about $130,000 per plate appearance. Or maybe c) didn’t want him in the first place, but owner Jeffrey Loria loves him.

He’ll likely land elsewhere as a part-timer, but Dobbs hasn’t topped a .725 OPS since 2008 and has hit a combined .254 with a .299 on-base percentage and .361 slugging percentage in 568 games since 2009.

Releasing him makes plenty of sense. Giving him $1.7 million in September is the odd part.

J.D. Martinez tells teams he prefers an outfield role

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Free agent outfielder/slugger J.D. Martinez is reportedly seeking an outfield gig, says Michael Silverman of the Boston Herald. According to Silverman’s sources, Martinez’s suitors have been informed that the veteran slugger would give preference to teams that can offer a corner outfield spot, rather than a DH-only role.

That could spell trouble for the Red Sox, who appear to be Martinez’s biggest suitors so far this offseason. Outfielders Mookie Betts and Andrew Benintendi are firmly established at the corners, and prior reports from club president Dave Dombrowski suggest that center fielder Jackie Bradley Jr. is not going anywhere anytime soon (thereby eliminating the possibility of reshuffling the outfield). The DH spot is still wide open for Martinez, who doesn’t seem to be totally closed off to the idea, but any full-time or part-time role on the field is likely off the table at this point.

Of course, the Red Sox aren’t the only ones pursuing Martinez’s services this winter. The 30-year-old slugger has been linked to both the Diamondbacks and Giants in weeks past, and while they have the roster flexibility to accommodate his preferences, they’ll need to clear another massive hurdle: the seven-year, $250 million contract he’s said to be seeking. Both clubs will need to get creative to make such a deal work. The Diamondbacks are rumored to be shopping right-hander Zack Greinke in an attempt to free up some room on their payroll for Martinez, while the Giants appear more inclined to scour the trade market for outfield help than shell out cash for another hefty contract in free agency.