Podcast: ‘Dugout Blues’ episode 181 – Ruiz/Kendrick trades, payroll, CBA

On this episode of “Dugout Blues,” Jared Massey (Dodger Blue) and I are back after a brief hiatus because, well, nothing has really happened in the Dodger world.

We break down the two minor trades the Dodgers made — Carlos Ruiz to the Mariners for Vidal Nuno and Howie Kendrick to the Phillies for Darin Ruf and Darnell Sweeney. Both trades are pretty inconsequential as the Dodgers have a cheaper and, likely, better backup option in Austin Barnes, and Kendrick really served no purpose on the team if he can’t play second base anymore. The Dodgers also saved about $13 million in these two deals, which isn’t insignificant.

The Dodgers are also actively trying to reduce payroll to — at some point — get to the luxury tax threshold and to comply with the current Collective Bargaining Agreement. Chad wrote about it on Sunday and we talked about it at some length.

Lourdes Gurriel signed with the Blue Jays in recent weeks. We chat about it because the Dodgers were interested in his services. They were also interested in Yulieski Gurriel, but they decided to pass on both of them. The Dodgers’ luck with MLB- or close-to-MLB-ready Cubans hasn’t been great of late, so it isn’t terribly surprising to see them pass on the younger Gurriel.

The reason things have been slow around baseball is because the new CBA has not yet been agreed to by the owners and players’ association. The biggest sticking point seems to be the international draft, which the union is staunchly opposed to. That’s great. The deadline for a new CBA is Thursday. Here’s hoping something gets done, otherwise the Winter Meetings are going to be quite boring.

Chase De Jong, Kyle Farmer and Jacob Rhame were all added to the 40-man roster to protect them from the Rule 5 Draft. De Jong and Rhame were no-brainers, while Farmer was almost a no-brainer. Of the three, Farmer has the best chance of making his MLB debut in 2017, with Rhame not close behind. De Jong probably shouldn’t see time in the majors this upcoming season.

To close, a solid Q&A session. Please keep the questions coming.

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Look for new episodes of “Dugout Blues” every Monday (or every other Monday in the offseason). Don’t forget to subscribe to the podcast and review us on iTunes. We want to make this the best podcast we can so we’re always looking for suggestions and ways to improve.

If you have questions you’d like us to answer or certain topics/players you want to hear more about, feel free to email us ([email protected]) or send us messages on Twitter (@JaredJMassey or @DustinNosler). You can also “Like” the podcast on Facebook. We always welcome audience participation.

About Dustin Nosler

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Dustin Nosler began writing about the Dodgers in July 2009 at his blog, Feelin' Kinda Blue. He co-hosted a weekly podcast with Jared Massey called Dugout Blues. He was a contributor/editor at The Hardball Times and True Blue LA. He graduated from California State University, Sacramento, with his bachelor’s degree in journalism and a minor in digital media. While at CSUS, he worked for the student-run newspaper The State Hornet for three years, culminating with a 1-year term as editor-in-chief. He resides in Stockton, Calif.