Dodgers don’t offer arbitration to any free agents
The decision by the Dodgers not to offer arbitration to pitcher Randy Wolf or any of their other free agents Tuesday should not be viewed as a sign that their uncertain ownership situation is affecting them financially, General Manager Ned Colletti said.
“Our decision was made strictly from a baseball perspective,” Colletti said.
The Dodgers’ most reliable starter last season, Wolf was among seven ranked free agents who played for them last season, the others being second baseman Orlando Hudson, infielder Ronnie Belliard, and pitchers Vicente Padilla, Jon Garland, Guillermo Mota and Will Ohman.
By offering a player arbitration, the Dodgers would have essentially been offering him a one-year contract. Had such an offer been rejected by a ranked player, the Dodgers would have received a compensatory pick in the upcoming amateur draft if that player signed with another team.
Wolf and Hudson were Type A free agents, meaning that had they turned down arbitration offers and signed elsewhere, the Dodgers would have received the first-round pick of the signing team, provided that the signing team was picking in the bottom half of the first round. Belliard, Padilla, Garland, Mota and Ohman were Type B free agents and would have netted a sandwich pick between the first and second rounds.
Wolf earned $8 million this year -- $5 million in base salary and another $3 million in incentives -- but could have earned substantially more in arbitration. In an arbitration hearing, Wolf and his representatives could have pointed to how his numbers from the 2009 season (11-7, 3.23 earned-run average) compared to those of Derek Lowe and Oliver Perez’s in 2008. Lowe signed a deal last winter that was worth $15 million a season; Perez signed for $12 million a season.
Noting that his team is short on starting pitching, Colletti says he remains interested in re-signing Wolf.
Wolf said he was open to returning, but added, “Coming back to the Dodgers, I think, for the most part, is not my decision.”
Wolf, who is seeking a multiple-year deal, acknowledged that shedding the label as a Type A free agent probably would benefit him on the free-agent market because other teams wouldn’t have to part with a high draft choice to sign him. As it was, Wolf said he was drawing interest from other clubs.