May 31, 2016
With a long-expected roster maneuver on Tuesday, the Dodgers ended a charade of waiting for another major-league club to remove Alex Guerrero’s four-year, $28-million contract from their ledger.
The team designated Guerrero, a 29-year-old with intriguing power but limited defensive ability, for assignment, effectively releasing him from the roster.
Guerrero will enter an eight-day waiver period in which another team could claim him. If a team chooses to do so, they will inherit his salary through 2017. That scenario is unlikely, according to major league executives, and the Dodgers are expected to be on the hook for the remainder of his $5-million salary in 2016 and $5 million in 2017.
The Dodgers signed Guerrero out of Cuba in 2013. His contract included a clause that allowed him to refuse any minor league assignment. That clause created a standoff heading into this season.
The team felt Guerrero lacked utility on its roster. Guerrero suffered a knee contusion during spring training. After a lengthy layoff, he started a 20-day rehabilitation assignment earlier this month. The assignment ended on Monday. Unable to make a trade, the Dodgers had to either call him up or cut him.
Guerrero hit .136 during his time in the minors this month. He showed signs of promise in a part-time role last season, hit five home runs in April with a 1.505 on-base plus slugging percentage. But his OPS during the rest of the season was .585.
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