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The Dodgers didn’t plan on making a last-minute push for Giancarlo Stanton trade

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It’s a foregone conclusion by this point, as Giancarlo Stanton is reportedly en route to New York to confirm a deal with the Yankees today, but MLB.com’s Jon Morosi reports that it was unlikely that the Dodgers would have made a last-ditch effort for Giancarlo Stanton this weekend. They were still in the middle of trade talks with the Marlins as of Friday night, but had not advanced as far as the Yankees in negotiations and were no longer thought to be serious players for the outfielder.

While Los Angeles was considered a preferred destination for Stanton at one point, there were a number of factors that made a deal iffy at best. Taking on the entirety of Stanton’s $295 million salary was never a possibility, and it would have been difficult, if not impossible for them to keep their payroll below the luxury tax threshold for the next several years. Stanton wouldn’t have been their only consideration, either, as they still have several big contract decisions on the horizon with established stars like Clayton Kershaw (who can opt out after the 2018 season), Corey Seager and Cody Bellinger.

Another point that worked against the Dodgers was their desire to offload larger contracts in a potential deal for Stanton. As Morosi pointed out yesterday, the Yankees were willing to provide the Marlins with an affordable, serviceable veteran in Starlin Castro, who comes cheaper than fellow veterans Adrian Gonzalez, Brandon McCarthy or Scott Kazmir would have. Combined with the Dodgers’ inability to absorb a large chunk of Stanton’s salary, it’s hardly surprising that the Marlins opted for a more team-friendly deal with the Yankees — as for Stanton himself, he may have missed out on signing with his hometown club, but still checked an item off his wish list after netting a contract with a top contender.

At least the Dodgers won’t face to face the Yankees’ star-studded lineup anytime soon… provided, of course, that the two don’t meet in the World Series.

Giants sign Darin Ruf to minor league contract

Darin Ruf
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The Athletic’s Jayson Stark reports that the Giants have signed 1B/OF Darin Ruf to a minor league contract.

Ruf, 33, played parts of five seasons in the majors with the Phillies from 2012-16, enjoying occasional offensive success. He spent the last three seasons in the KBO League in South Korea with the Samsung Lions, reigniting his career. Ruf hit an aggregate .313/.404/.564 with 86 home runs and 350 RBI over 1,756 plate appearances.

Ruf joins an ever-increasing list of players whose major league careers fizzled out, then found new life overseas — Eric Thames and Miles Mikolas are a couple of examples. Ruf will hope to prove himself as a big leaguer once more in spring training with the Giants.