The Los Angeles Dodgers have sure had a strange offseason. Currently in bankruptcy, they are in a process to be sold, with Frank McCourt getting to decide between a reported 10-12 bidders to purchase the team, a sale that will close by April 30. Even with the ownership situation unknown, the Dodgers were still in the running for first baseman Prince Fielder, who signed a nine-year, $214 million contract with the Detroit Tigers instead.
The Dodgers extended almost-but-should-have-been National League MVP Matt Kemp with an eight-year, $160 million contract in November, but other than that the offseason in Los Angeles has been filled with signings of mediocre players, many on two year deals with a lower salary in 2012 trying to fit within a supposed budget. The Dodgers even re-upped first baseman James Loney for one-year at $6.375 million, suggesting that they were not even in the market.
Not so, says Jon Heyman of CBS Sports, who said the Dodgers were one of the mystery teams in on Fielder, like Detroit. Heyman said the Dodgers offered a seven-year deal with an opt-out clause for the burly first baseman:
The Dodgers' offer was said to have called for an average salary of about $26 million for the first four years and something in the low $20-million-range in the next three years. The bid was designed not to discourage Fielder from opting out and possibly moving to the American League where he could DH after the first four years. The total Dodgers deal was believed to have been worth in the low $160 millions.
One can only wonder what would have happened had Victor Martinez not torn his ACL, causing him to miss all of 2012. Without the Tigers in play, would the Dodgers have had a new first baseman? We'll never know.
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