The Dodgers who have a payroll of at least $213mm, are set to open the season with Hanley Ramirez at shorstop and Luis Cruz at third. Ramirez provides great pop for a shortstop but questionable defense, while Cruz provides just the opposite. But besides Ramirez and Cruz, the next Dodger option at third base is Juan Uribe who may be playing softball very soon as rumors have surfaced that he may be released.
Bill Shaikin of the LA Times reports that the Dodgers have expressed interest in Rolen as a backup to Cruz. Rolen, who turns 38 in April has spent the last four years with the Reds. It was reported in early October that he was expected to retire. With that news in mind, the Reds went about their offseason making plans as if Rolen was going to retire. They anointed Todd Frazier as the starter and signed Jack Hannahan to a two-year deal.
Rolen though now appears to be mulling putting off retirement and could consider the Dodgers if an offer is made. Though he may start the season in a reserve role, he could see substantial time if Cruz falters to produce at the plate.
Last season in limited action in part because of injuries, Rolen hit .245/.318/.398 in 330 plate appearances with only 8 home runs.
For his career, Rolen has posted a .281/.364/.490 slash line in 17 seasons. He has a little bit of hardware on his mantel which includes 1997 NL Rookie of the Year, 8 Gold Gloves, 7 All Star appearances, 1 Silver Slugger and a World Series ring from 2006 with the Cardinals.
Image taken by Keith Allison and used under the Creative Common License Agreement.