Mondesi Seeking $4-Million Raise


As expected, Dodger all-star outfielder Raul Mondesi filed for arbitration Monday, seeking nearly a $4-million raise.

Mondesi, who made $2.7 million last season, asked for $6.5 million. The Dodgers countered at $5.3 million.

Mondesi, who isn’t eligible for free agency until after the 1999 season, had said he is seeking a multiyear deal worth about $60 million.


Outfielder Todd Hollandsworth also filed for arbitration, seeking a raise to $1.15 million from $550,000. The Dodgers offered $700,000.

Although the exchange of numbers begins the process, Mondesi’s agent, Adam Katz, said he is optimistic an agreement can be reached.

“We’re in discussions and things are progressing,” Katz said recently. “The Dodgers have Raul under control for ’98 and ‘99, so we’re just going to keep talking and see what develops.”

Likewise, Dodger executive vice president Fred Claire is hopeful for a settlement.

“Raul is a very important player for us,” said Claire, who has had few cases reach an arbitrator during his tenure at the Dodgers’ helm. “The goal is to reach a settlement--it always has been and will continue to be.”

Dodger catcher Mike Piazza filed for a then-record $7.65-million contract last year. Mondesi, the right fielder and outfield anchor, last season became the first Dodger to hit 30 home runs and steal 30 bases in a season, batting .310 with 30 home runs, 87 runs batted in and 32 stolen bases.

Mondesi, the 1994 rookie of the year, also led the Dodgers with 42 doubles last season and won his second Gold Glove award. He is considered to have one of the strongest arms among outfielders.


Hollandsworth won the 1996 rookie-of-the-year award after batting .291 with 12 homers and 59 RBI’s. But he slipped last season, hitting .247. Still, he is expected to start in left field.

“We have a lot of confidence in Todd,” Claire said. “We feel he’s going to be an extremely important part of our team.”