Dodgers Come to Terms With Adam Kennedy

November 30, 2011 at 11:21 am | Posted in Adam Kennedy | 49 Comments


As we learned yesterday, the Dodgers were close to an agreement with Adam Kennedy, and now we know the details: once he passes his physical, he’ll be signed to a one-year deal worth $800k.

Frankly, I was terrified that he’d be getting a guaranteed contract into the millions, so this is a bit more palatable, given that 800k is barely above the veteran minimum. That means it’s a relatively low-cost investment that hardly ranks above a non-roster invite, and one that should hopefully make it easy to part ways with him if and when he proves to be cooked - though it still doesn’t answer the question of why he rates a guaranteed contract in the first place. You’d think that a decent-glove, dead-fish-bat utility infielder could be had for nothing more than a plane ticket to camp – see Aaron Miles, 2011 – but then again, creamy veteran goodness like this isn’t easy to find. (Disclaimer: it is extremely easy to find.)

As the wonderfully-named “The Dude Abides” noted in the comments yesterday, if you’re going to get a lefty-swinging infield bat who can sort of play a few positions, Wilson Betemit would have been a far better choice. No, he’s not Kennedy’s equal with the glove, but the Mark Ellis / Juan Uribe infield is full of solid defenders who may not be able to hit. Add Betemit for his offense, carry Justin Sellers for his defense, and call it a day.

Anyway, once this is finalized, it all but finishes off the offseason shopping on offense, leaving us with a presumed Opening Day crew of…

C A.J. Ellis
C Matt Treanor
1B James Loney
2B Mark Ellis
SS Dee Gordon
3B Juan Uribe
IF Adam Kennedy
IF Justin Sellers*
LF Juan Rivera
CF Matt Kemp
RF Andre Ethier
OF Jerry Sands*
OF Tony Gwynn**

Sellers & Sands are marked because they’re young players who aren’t totally guaranteed to break camp with the club, and Gwynn hasn’t officially been tendered a contract yet, though most assume it’s a given that he will be.

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  1. I was going to write this on DT later this week, but unless the Dodgers are planning a strict platoon with Loney or Ethier (chances of this – about 0), I don’t see Sands breaking camp with the team just to be a fourth outfielder. Not at his age and development level. Instead, he gets called up when the inevitable injury or slump happens to Rivera, Ethier or Loney.

    • I agree with you, but I keep holding out hope that they can’t possibly be stupid enough to count on Juan Rivera to be an everyday player. Besides, if they’re serious about restricting Loney & Ethier’s access to lefty pitching, they’ll need two righty bats to do it.

      • The best solution is for Jerry to tear the cover off the ball throughout spring training. BTW, Mike…today’s MSTI post has really tied my day together.

        • Why is it, whenever Frank McCourt micturates, I must be held responsible?

          • Because you…………hey careful man, there’s a beverage here!

          • The rug really tied the room together man!

      • I have seen no smoke signals that they are serious about restricting Loney & Ethier’s access to lefty pitching, have you?

        • Well, there was that whole business about Alex Tamin and how his “advanced quantitative work” helped Colletti see the light that both Ethier and Loney are awful against LHP.

          So Colletti will have to apply his increased sabermetric vision to improving this team around the edges. For example, Colletti re-signed righthanded hitter Juan Rivera ($4.5 million) because his quantitative analysis showed the Dodgers’ lefthanded hitters posted a .566 OPS against lefthanded pitching. Only the Padres, Pirates and Nationals were worse in the NL. Rivera, who can play first base or the outfield, gives manager Don Mattingly an option against lefthanded pitching in place of either Loney (.561 OPS vs. lefties) or Ethier (.563), who ranked 215 and 217 out of the 226 players who were given at least 100 plate appearances against lefties.

          • Ah, okay.

          • Hopefully Sands is the primary LF, with Rivera able to start multiple games at 1B, RF and LF. Hopefully AJ Ellis plays well, and Federowicz plays well in NM, as Treanor should not have to be relied upon to be any MLB team’s 2nd C.
            Go Blue!

      • “they can’t possibly be stupid enough to count on Juan Rivera to be an everyday player”
        *tongue firmly planted in cheek*…..

  2. Ugh. This doesn’t look like an 80-win team to me. Unless Kemp does go 50-50 as he aims to do. And gets to bat twice an inning.

    • Well, if Chan Ho Park pitches every game against the Dodgers….

  3. So David DeJesus and Juan Rivera will be making the same amount next year. I wonder who will be worth more?

    Jeez, Ned.

    • What would you expect? Look who Chicago’s new GM is and who LA’s GM is.

  4. Well, if the new owners have some cash and the team is playing well around the trade deadline, then there could be excitement… I’m not holding my breath though.

  5. I’m going to say that this is the 2nd worst infield in the major leagues behind (ahead?) of Houston. I’m assuming that the Cubs will spend money at some point on a high priced free agent that will elevate them, but as it stands they’re in the running at this point.

  6. The Dodgers may have come to terms with Adam Kennedy, but I haven’t.

    • ROFL

      • copter

    • lolz

  7. The title of this post should have been “Dodgers Come to Terms With Adam Kennedy, Forcing Dodger Fans to Come to Terms With Adam Kennedy.”

    • +1

    • LOL, nice

  8. Why does someone who put up the worst season of his career at age 35 deserve a RAISE? AK got a 750K minor league deal from SEA last year and after tanking, Ned gives him a RAISE and a Major League deal. WTF? Colletti gonna Colletti?

    • Just be thankful that the buffoon didn’t give Kennedy two years at $2 million per.

    • Deserve has nothing to do with it. Ned Colletti doesn’t comprehend value, or logic, or baseball, seemingly. As you astutely pointed out, Colletti gonna Colletti.

      • Ned being Ned. The worst GM in baseball.

  9. How I wish I was 35, scrappy, white, and smaller than my baseball bat. I’d make $800k from Uncle Ned too.

    Where’s that gypsy from “Big” when you need her?

  10. Remember the last time the Dodgers signed a veteran player who also played a crucial part in the Angels winning a title in 2002?

    • NOPE! Never happened. LALALALALALALALALA

  11. My counter question to Mike is this:

    Betemit would cost way more than $800k right? Or even $1M on a 1yr deal. I’m betting he would fetch $5 or so easily. Granted, they could have passed on these retreads and just signed Betemit instead of that’s besides the point.

    In a vacuum, signing Betemit would be better but at what cost? Would that cost us a chance at resigning Kuroda?

    • My guess is that Betemit will sign for somewhere in the $1.5m-$3m per year range. He hasn’t been a full-time player for awhile. He’s averaged 241 PAs over the past five seasons.

  12. I sure hope the first thing a new ownership does is replace Colletti!!! He gets worse by the year.

  13. Looking at the potential opening day roster made me depressed.

    • Ned’s not done dealing. Craig Counsell, Mark DeLaRosa and Juan Pierre are still available.

      • Already have Juan Pierre, except he sports a nice fade and plays short stop.

  14. Ned Colletti: I think there must be something wrong with me, De Jon. The Winter Meetings are coming, but I’m not happy. I don’t feel the way I’m supposed to feel. I just don’t understand the Hot Stove season, I guess. I like getting free agents and talking trade and exchanging arbitration figures and all that, but I’m still not happy. I always end up feeling depressed.

    De Jon Watson: Ned Colletti, you’re the only person I know who can take a wonderful season like the Hot Stove and turn it into a problem. Maybe Logan is right. Of all the Ned Collettis in the world, you’re the Ned Collettiest.

    • ^This is amazing

  15. I’m not so bummed about Kennedy. 800K for a decent defensive utility player who can’t hit sounds fine by me, only because I was afraid Ned would give him much more. This doesn’t make me want to poke my eye with sharp objects. Yet.

    Also, I will never forget how awesome and improbable it was when Kennedy hit 3 homeruns in Game 5 of the ALCS. Let’s hope he can hit 3 this season.

    Finally, You and Weisman scared me with the Sands revelation. I wasn’t thinking about it, but you’re right. Sands might not play if Mattingly believes Rivera can start. Ugh. Let’s just hope that Rivera plays himself out of a job early.

    • Rivera can start for Ethier or Loney against tough LHPs like Lee, otherwise,
      he is best suited as the veteran power off the Dodgers bench. A dozen or so starts in RF, and a dozen or so starts at 1B, with maybe a couple dozen starts in LF for Sands could work for LA. Go Blue!

  16. Are Hawksworth or Eveland all we will have to compete for the #5 spot?

    Ned- Its the starting pitching stupid.

    Larry King can you effort to buy us some starting pitching?

  17. Is it wrong to think Capuano can be had for $4M? I actually wouldn’t mind it.

  18. I’m sure you all have read the fangraphs article on the signing…but if not I shall provide the link below. It is hilarious in a very…factual way. Hilarious and sad.

    http://www.fangraphs.com/blogs/index.php/adam-kennedy-gets-a-major-league-roster-spot/

    • This is the comment that sums it up for me:
      .

      “Well, the why not comes the scarcity of roster positions, upside, and the almost half-mill they could save by going with an in-house option.”

      .

      Admit that next year is a “transition” year, take this money, and any other monies you intend to use on washed up veterans, dump it into the minor league system and go with the young players that are already here.

      .

      Ned is an idiot. Haven’t we seen enough idiocy surrounding the Dodgers?

  19. Eff you, Ned…eff you.

    Why in the hell didn’t we just save the roster spot (and $$$) for Justin Sellers?

    My greatest hope for 2012 is that new ownership will give NedCo the axe–it’s becoming a two horse race for the title of the greatest Dodgers saboteur, and Frankie’s only winning by a nose.

  20. I think Sellers as of now still makes the OD roster, it’s Mitchell who got hosed by this deal.
    13 position players- A.J. Ellis, Traenor, Loney, Mark Ellis, Gordon, Uribe, Kennedy, Sellers, Rivera, Kemp, Ethier, Gwynn, player X (I hope it’s Sands, but it may not be unless he’s a regular)
    12 pitchers- Kershaw, Bills, Lilly, Eovali, starter X, Guerra, Jensen, Elbert, Guillier, Hawksworth, Lindbloom, LOOGY (possibly Kuo or that lefty they just signed to minor league deal)

    Now this is the OD roster, hopefully it’ll be a lot different come July 31st with new owner and GM in place. But the point is Sellers is on it, because he fills the backup SS, otherwise it would need to be Uribe.

  21. [...] After not being able to find a guaranteed contract in 2011 and having a horrible season… receives a guaranteed deal from the [...]

  22. [...] 2011: After not being able to find a guaranteed contract in 2011 and having a horrible season… receives a guaranteed deal from the [...]


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