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Scott Podsednik declines his option to return to Dodgers; now do they have to do something?

OK, Dodgers, now what are you going to do?

Scott Podsednik on Thursday declined his option to return to the Dodgers, and that may end an easy and inexpensive way out for a potential left fielder.

Try to think of this as good news. It could now force the Dodgers to aggressively seek a left fielder, preferably one capable of sending a baseball over the fence.

They desperately need to find another middle-of-the-order threat at some position.

Podsednik had his uses, enough so that the Dodgers had picked up their half of the mutual option on him for next season, which called for a $2-million salary.

But apparently -- hopefully -- they weren't promising him a starting job, and $2 million is plenty cheap for a veteran starting outfielder. And his returning is not off the table either.

Podsednik's agent, Ryan Gleichowski, told The Times' Dylan Hernandez that they remain in conversations with the Dodgers and that Podsednik would like to return.

"We're still engaged in discussions with the Dodgers," Gleichowski said.

It's something of a gamble for Podsednik, 34, who as a free agent last offseason (after batting .304 and stealing 30 bases with the White Sox in 2009) found attractive offers wanting. He ended up signing a one-year deal with the lowly Royals for $1.65 million.

He hit .297 with 35 stolen bases overall last season. He missed the last month of the season after suffering plantar fasciitis in his left foot.

If the Dodgers were looking at Podsednik as their insurance plan, at this moment, left field is a wasteland. There is no one in their system close to being ready to claim an everyday job -- not light-hitting Xavier Paul nor Trayvon Robinson.

Jerry Sands emerged as their top-hitting prospect last season, but he split his time between class-A Great Lakes and double-A Chattanooga and looks a year away.

Jay Gibbons, currently a free agent, is viewed more as left-handed pinch hitter and role player.

The Dodgers are hardly dealing from a position of strength in acquiring a significant bat. Free agents Carl Crawford and Jayson Werth are thought to be out of their financial league.

That leaves the trade route, and the Dodgers don't have much to offer there either.

Podsednik as a backup and role player still has its appeal. Gleichowski said finances and playing time are all considerations in Podsednik's decision to become a free agent.

-- Steve Dilbeck

Comments () | Archives (12)

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Atleast we still have Vinnie.

Who needs this banjo hitting journeyman outfielder; just another bum McCrap wanted.

It's amazing that slap hitters that can't carry a team think they are too good to play for the Dodgers. This guy did very little at the top of the order and was one of the reasons the Dodger offense was so atrocious. Good riddance Scotty you are yet another overrated ball player stealing checks from desperate teams every year.

It's all doom and gloom with this lot....

Modern-day baseball never ceases to amaze me. Here we have a mediocre player like Podsednik seemingly turning down TWO MILLION a year - $40,000 a week EVERY week for fifty weeks. Even with ten per cent for his agent, it's still $36,000 weekly for someone for someone who only plays part-time (and doesn't do THAT very well).

I would like to offer my services to the Dodgers right here and now - I can't play baseball very well, either, and I won't play very well for only ONE million a year (and I promise I won't insist on increased playing time to not do well even more so).

I would do the same if I was Podsednik. I would see what is out there and bide my time as the Dodgers will not go for a big item player and they don't have the trade bait. Eventually, the Dodgers might have to come back to Podsednik and offer him the $2 mil or, heaven forbid, pay him more.

I am not saying he will solve the left field problem or that he is worth it, but he might gamble that they can't and won't pay to get a competent player. $2.1 mil or a little higher is probably what he and his agent are looking for.

How about Adam Dunn for our LF. He can't be any worse than Manny out in left. Plus, Dunn hits 35-40 HRs every year.

Apparently, beggars can be choosers...

$1.65 mill to play pretty well for the Royals.

Where do I sign?

$2 mill ($350 k raise) aft playing poorly your own backyard the dudgers.

Get lost.

Good thing a backup plan was in place - the other guy re-signed for $400 k.

Same shaky southpaw defense, less speed, more power & a savings $1.6 mill.

Starve a fever feed a cold, or is it... does it make any difference anyway?

The Dodgers have bigger holes to deal with than left field (2B, 3B, C) because 1) Ned Colletti is most likely working with a limited budget and 2) the Dodgers at least have some organizational depth to work with at LF in the high minors and don't have much at 2B, 3B and C at the same levels.

My suggestion is for the Dodgers to resign Jay Gibbons (or a similar free agent talent) to a one-year deal and let one of the team's tops prospects in Double-A mentioned above (Trayvon Robinson, Jerry Sands or power hitting Kyle Russell who wasn't mentioned) get a shot during 2011.

Based on the Dodgers recent history, most of their top prospects (Kershaw, Kemp, Broxton, Billingsley, Martin, Jansen) spent little to no time in Triple-A prior to be promoted to the major so saying Jerry Sands "looks to be a year away" is more Steve Dilbeck's "personal opinion" that fact. Note: Only James Loney spent an entire season in Triple-A for the Dodgers. Andre Ethier was an A's prospect so he doesn't apply.

I'd also note that things aren't all gloom in doom for the Dodgers (at least at the minor league level) as Baseball America recently ranked the Top 20 prospects for each level of the Minor Leagues. The end result was that the Dodgers has 14 players on these lists which came in as third best for all of baseball (only the Rangers 18 and Rays 15) did better.

I will miss you, Scotty Pods, trying to find your way around the outfield.

I'm wondering if Posednick looked at what is out there in FA and what is on the farm and knows he is still the only option for the Dodgers even at twice the price.

I don't see any Dodger upgrades coming other then to Jamie and Frank's lawyer's vacation homes.

I foresee Posednick in left field with a new 2 year deal from LA. Say 3.5, 4mil with a 500k buyout. Sucks to be Coletti, I bet he wished he was still in SF.

Who else can we afford that would be better?

It was a starting job.
We would be lucky to have him.
He has a World Series ring ind is a star.
He turned us down.
He will be an impact platoon player with the Giants.


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