Dodgers' Blake Hawksworth opts for free agency

Joe Murphy

The injury-plagued right-hander would have been eligible for salary arbitration were he not outrighted to Triple-A Albuquerque.

Los Angeles Dodgers right-hander Blake Hawksworth, who was outrighted to Triple-A by the team last week, has elected to become a free agent, according to a report from the team on Wednesday.

Hawksworth is coming off an injury-riddled 2012 during which the 29-year-old underwent three surgeries. The right-hander had one surgery on his right elbow in January, and second to clean out an infection. His comeback attempt from the two elbow surgeries was derailed by a right shoulder injury that required surgery in August, and is expected to keep him out for most, if not all, of the 2013 season.

Hawksworth came to the Dodgers in a trade with the St. Louis Cardinals for Ryan Theriot two years ago. In 2011, he was 2-5, with a 4.08 ERA in 53 innings for the Dodgers. With three years of MLB service time under his belt, the right-hander would have been eligible for salary arbitration this winter were he not outrighted to Triple-A.

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