Hanrahan, Lundberg Head Free Agent List

By protecting ony shortstop Wilson Valdez, the Dodgers have left 22 players available as minor league free agents, a group headed by some potentially inviting pitchers.

Valdez, who was the Most Valuable Player at Las Vegas, was promoted to the 40-man roster, something Los Angeles declined to do in the cases of Joel Hanrahan, Spike Lundberg and T. J. Nall, among others.

Hanrahan, a righthander, was considered the top pitching prospect in the organization a few years ago but developed arm trouble and fell back. However, this past season he seemed to redeem himself as he went 7-2, 2.58 at Jacksonville, then 4-3, 4.48, at Las Vegas. However, it wasn't enough for the Dodgers to promote him .

The bulk of the staff that pitched Jacksonville into the Southern League playoffs is available to any club now including Lundberg, the league's Pitcher of the Year with his 15-2, 2.27 record, Nall was 10-7, 2.62 for the Suns while Heath Totten went 8-5, 3.29. Ben Kozlowski is another from that team who is now free to negotiate.

Then, there's those in various stages of rehabilitation who also were let loose including Ryan Ketchner, who seemed to be coming back after elbow surgery, plus former Dodgers Derek Thompson and Kelly Wunsch.

Tops among the position players available is first baseman Craig Brazell, a fomer Met, who led the Southern League in RBI with 91.

The complete list:

Pitchers- Righthanders Kurt Ainsworth, Hanrahan, William Juarez, Lundberg, Nall, Justin Reid, and Totten. Lefthanders Ketchner, Kozlowski, Matt Merricks, Thompson and Wunsch.
Catchers- Edwin Bellorin, Brad Cresse, Eric Langill.
First Base- Brazell, A. J. Zapp.
Infielders Eric Riggs.
Outfielders- Nick Alvarez, Jeff Duncan, Adam Greenburg, and Tydus Meadows.

There are several former Dodgers who opted for free agency from other teams including 1998 first round draft choice outfielder Bubba Crosby, Brian Myrow, Mike Kinkade, Brad Clontz, Steve Colyer, Terry Adams and Jose Offerman.
The list also includes Fernando Valenzuela, Jr., son of the former great lefthander, now a Dodger Spanish language broadcaster. Fernando, Jr, is a first baseman who was with the White Sox.

The Dodgers are still able to negotiate contracts with any of the players including those they let go themselves.

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