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Category: Jamie Hoffmann

Dodgers lose Jamie Hoffmann to Rockies

Jamie HoffmannAs expected, there hasn’t been much news coming out of the Dodgers’ camp in the first day of baseball’s winter meetings.

But the team cleared a spot on its previously full 40-man roster by placing minor-league outfielder Jamie Hoffmann on outright waivers, and Hoffmann was claimed by the Colorado Rockies.

This marks the second time the Dodgers have parted ways with the 27-year-old Hoffman, who impressed defensively over 14 games in his first major-league call-up in 2009.

In the off-season that followed, Hoffmann was picked in the Rule V draft by the Washington Nationals and immediately traded to the New York Yankees. Because Rule V players who are dropped from the major-league roster must be offered back to their original clubs, Hoffmann returned to the Dodgers system in March  2010.

Hoffmann played in two major-league games last season for the Dodgers and was 0 for 4. He hit .297 with 22 home runs and 84 runs batted in for triple-A Albuquerque.

— Dylan Hernandez in Dallas


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Photo: Jamie Hoffmann rounds third base after hitting his first major league home run in 2009. Credit: Gina Ferazzi / Los Angeles Times

Black holes and the theory of the Dodgers' relative offense

Kemp_300 Imagine you are Don Mattingly and look down at your bench. Easy now, you are only pretending.

They are what they are, which isn’t his fault. He doesn’t sign or groom players. He does, however, pick his poison and figures out who to start.

Here’s a free tip: Try not to pick out eight starters with only two guys capable of hitting the ball over the fence.

Which is what he did Sunday, putting his main horses, Andre Ethier and Matt Kemp, who have cooled, in the third and fourth spots in the batting order, and then mostly a lot of flotsam around them.

At least Jamey Carroll and Aaron Miles are doing their job at the top of the order and getting on base, which pretty much ended the team’s offensive highlights in Sunday’s 4-1 loss to the lowly Arizona Diamondbacks.

Elsewhere, it was cover-the-eyes material.

Ethier and Kemp combined to finish 0 for 7, and then behind them came James Loney, Dioner Navarro, Juan Castro and Tony Gwynn Jr. Honest, they were trying to win.

The four of them have two home runs combined. Which is just about what you would expect.

Loney is hitting .230, Navarro .176, Castro was hitless in his season debut and Gwynn is hitting .224.

Gwynn got the start in left field, which is the biggest black hole in a lineup littered with them.

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Dodgers call up Jamie Hoffmann, return John Ely to triple-A; Jon Garland lined up to start Friday

Jamie-hoffman_150 Hope he can hit.

The Dodgers added outfielder Jamie Hoffmann (pictured at left) to the 25-man roster before their game Monday against the Giants and sent right-hander John Ely back to triple-A Albuquerque.

That means the Dodgers are ready to activate right-hander Jon Garland the next time the fifth spot in the rotation comes up on Friday.

Which also means Hoffmann is scheduled to hang around for four games until then. Unless, of course, he actually hits in those few days and forces his way for a longer stay. The way the Dodgers are hitting, the opening is certainly there.

Hoffmann is the outfielder claimed in the Rule 5 draft a year ago, who nearly made the Yankees before being returned to the Dodgers.

In his first four games at Albuquerque, the right-handed hitting Hoffman was five for 11, with a pair of runs batted in and runs.

Ely started Sunday against the Padres
and was fairly mediocre. He went 5 2/3 innings, allowing four runs on six hits and three walks. He struck out five.

Garland, meanwhile, threw a rehab game for the Inland Empire 66ers on Sunday. He allowed three runs on six hits in 4 2/3 innings.

-- Steve Dilbeck

Photo credit: Morry Gash / Associated Press

Dodgers reassign Dee Gordon, option John Lindsey and Trayvon Robinson to the minors

Some day Dee Gordon and Trayvon Robinson may break camp firmly in the Dodgers’ immediate plans.

Not this spring, though. Not for this coming season.

Gordon and Robinson were among six Dodgers on Monday who had to pack their bags and head over to the minor league clubhouse.

If they were looking for sympathy, however, they were in the wrong group. John Lindsey, the first baseman who tore up triple-A pitching last season to finally earn a September call up after 16 years in the minor leagues, was also optioned back to the minor league camp.

Right-hander Javy Guerra, outfielder Jamie Hoffman, Lindsey and Robinson were all optioned to the minor leagues. Damaso Espino and Gordon, who are not on the 40-man roster, were simply reassigned to the minors.

Gordon is considered one of the Dodgers’ top prospects and their shortstop of the future. The speedy Gordon, who turns 23 next month, played all of last season at double-A Chattanooga, where he hit .277 and stole 53 bases.

Robinson, 23, was also at Chattanooga last season. The outfielder hit .300 and stole 38 bases. Signed when he was 17, this will be his seventh year in the organization. Guerra, 25, was a reliever at Chattanooga, where he had a 2.33 earned-run average but a 1.70 WHIP.

Lindsey was a late-season, feel-good story for the Dodgers. After laboring all those years in the minors, he became an instant hit in their September clubhouse, both for his story and his infectious personality.

Hoffman, 26, could be running out of time. He was taken by the Yankees in the Rule 5 Draft last year, but returned before the season began. At triple-A Albuquerque, he hit .310 with a .431 slugging percentage.

Espino, 27, is a light-hitting catcher from Panama.

--Steve Dilbeck

Trent Oeltjen receives a rude welcoming from Aroldis Chapman

The first pitch got Trent Oeltjen’s attention.

It was high. Really high.

As in over the catcher’s mitt and over the umpire’s head.

On the mound was Aroldis Chapman, the Cincinnati Reds’ reliever who threw the fastest recorded pitch in baseball history last season at 105 mph.

Chapman’s next three pitches were strikes. Oeltjen, who is in camp on a minor league contract, struck out looking to start the seventh inning of the Dodgers’ 3-1 defeat to the Reds at Goodyear Ballpark on Thursday night.

Chapman struck out Jamie Hoffmann, then forced Trayvon Robinson to ground out to end the inning.

Oeltjen laughed as he recalled the first pitch.

“If it was at my face, I wouldn’t have had time to move,” Oeltjen said. “It woke me up. He sent a message he was throwing hard.”

Told that it also probably woke up the home-plate umpire Tony Randazzo, Oeltjen responded, “Everybody. I think the whole stadium woke up.”

Oeltjen said of Randazzo, “He wouldn’t have gotten up from that.”

Dodgers Manager Don Mattingly smiled and shook his head when asked about Chapman.

“Jeez, huh?” Mattingly said. “He was Randy Johnson-ish. It gets there quick, doesn’t it?”

-- Dylan Hernandez


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