The Dodgers have exercised their half of Scott Podsednik’s mutual option for 2011, meaning the speedy outfielder now has 72 hours to accept the $2 million contract or become a free agent.
Acquired from the Royals at the trading deadline, Podsednik took over for Manny Ramirez in left field and hit just .262/.313/.336 in 39 games. Overall in the past three seasons he’s hit .294 with a .344 on-base percentage and .389 slugging percentage.
Ideally he’d be a fourth outfielder because his lack of power makes him a poor fit as a regular left fielder and he can no longer handle center field defensively, but like most managers Don Mattingly would probably have a tough time limiting him to spot duty.
Asked if Podsednik would be the Dodgers’ starting left fielder, general manager Ned Colletti replied that he’d “have to wait and see” what happens during the offseason. In addition to $2 million in guaranteed money Podsednik could earn another $300,000 in incentives.
The Yankees appear to have moved on from free agent Manny Machado this winter, but could they be turning their attention to Rockies superstar Nolan Arenado? That’s the idea floated by Andy Martino of SNY, who hears that GM Brian Cashman has been involved in recent discussions concerning the third baseman. No official comments have been made to the press yet, though, and it’s not clear whether the Yankees would prefer to pursue Arenado prior to the 2019 season or partway through it.
The 27-year-old infielder earned his fourth consecutive All-Star nomination, Silver Slugger, and Gold Glove award in 2018 after slashing .297/.374/.561 with 38 home runs, a .935 OPS, and 5.7 fWAR across 673 plate appearances. There’s no question he’s provided immense value to Colorado’s lineup over the last half-decade, and his consistency and incredible power at the plate helped form the basis of the record $30 million arbitration figure he presented to the team last week. The Rockies countered at $24 million, however, and in doing so may have jeopardized their chances of convincing the infielder to forego free agency in 2020 and take a long-term deal instead.
Assuming he declines to negotiate an extension with the Rockies, Arenado’s decorated résumé and career-best 2018 numbers should attract plenty of interest around the league — a reality that could put considerable pressure on the Yankees (or any other interested party) to finesse a deal sooner rather than later. For now, the club is prepared to enter the 2019 season with hot-hitting third baseman Miguel Andújar, whom Martino speculates would be the “centerpiece” of any trade with Colorado.