The Dodgers announced Monday that they would not attempt to re-sign either Enos Cabell or Joe Beckwith, two of their four potential free agents.
Pitcher Bob Welch, one of the four, is expected to be re-signed by the Dodgers. Bill Russell, who was also eligible for free agency, has retired and accepted a coaching position with the club.
Cabell, 37, hit .256 in 107 games after batting .292 in 57 games after his acquisition from Houston in 1985.
Said Dodger Vice President Al Campanis: "He and Bill Madlock really helped down the stretch in '85, but we've historically gone with younger people and we're going that way again."
Cabell primarily played first base and third base, backing up Madlock at third. Campanis said that Jeff Hamilton will battle Madlock at third base next spring, and that the club will take a hard look at two other prospects, first baseman Larry See and catcher-third baseman-first baseman Jon Debus, whose versatility is similar to Cabell's.
Reached at his Anaheim Hills home Monday, Cabell refused to discuss the Dodgers' decision or the fact he formally filed for free agency Monday, an indication that he hopes to continue playing.
Asked about the future, he said: "We're going to take time to see what's happening, but the best thing for me right now is to have no comment."
Cabell was one of seven players suspended for the season by Commissioner Peter Ueberroth last spring for drug involvement.
Each of the seven was allowed to continue playing if he provided 100 hours of drug related community service work in both 1986 and 1987 and donated 10% of his 1986 base salary--he had a salary of $450,000--to an approved drug program. The seven were given 25 months to meet the financial stipulations.
A spokesman in the commissioner's office said Monday that Cabell would have to continue meeting the stipulations in order to play next year. If he doesn't play, the spokesman said, his obligation would be terminated.