Sabathia offered $110 Million for 6 Years?

Having rescinded their two-year, $45 million offer to Manny Ramirez on the day Ramirez became free to negotiate with other clubs, the Dodgers appear to have turned their attention to free agent pitcher CC Sabathia. Rumors have it that they have made him a six-year offer.

Although the club hasn't closed the door on re-signing Ramirez, the Dodgers don't have the payroll flexibility to sign both Ramirez and Sabathia, so the Dodgers' courtship of Sabathia could be simply a ploy to put pressure on Ramirez and his agent, Scott Boras. But the Dodgers do need starting pitching, having apparently lost both Derek Lowe and Brad Penny to free agency this winter.

With the free-agent left-hander already mulling offers that are believed to be five years for $100 million (Brewers) and six years for $140-145 million (Yankees), a report by Dan Graziano on NJ.com said the Dodgers are considering a six-year deal worth $110 to $120 million, if they haven't put it in front of Sabathia and his agents Greg Genske and Brian Peters already.

?The report cited Sabathia's desire to pitch both in the National League and Southern California as potential pluses that could sweeten a deal despite falling short monetarily.

Another team that is apparently entering the fray for Sabathia is the Giants, who look to offer a deal that falls somewhere between what the Brewers and Yankees have offered, according to another report on NJ.com. Sabathia was 17-10 with a 2.70 ERA in 35 combined starts between the Indians and Brewers, but he was 11-2 with Milwaukee after coming over in a July 7 trade. That included a 9-0 run in 11 starts with the Brewers. Sabathia dropped his lone postseason start

Los Angeles general manager Ned Colletti is reticent to sign any player for longer than three years. But Colletti has been known in the past to try to persuade players to take fewer years and less total money than they might be able to get elsewhere for a higher average annual value and the chance to be a free agent again sooner, the exact tactic he used to sign Rafael Furcal to a three-year contract after 2005 when it appeared Furcal was on the verge of taking a five-year offer from the Chicago Cubs.

Sabathia has informed the Yankees he won't make a decision on their offer until sometime after the Thanksgiving weekend.

And along the same lines, one day after Randy Johnson filed for free agency upon failing to reach agreement on a new contract with the Diamondbacks, one of his agents named the Dodgers as one of the teams on a short-list of preferred destinations.

"His preference is to be on the West Coast and in the National League, and I think there's a team like that in LA," agent Alan Nero said, adding he had not yet spoken to the Dodgers. "The fact California's so close (to his Arizona home), it would make a lot of sense. I hope we're going to hear from them."

Johnson is 45, but his Hall of Fame credentials as a five-time Cy Young Award winner could be attractive to Colletti, who is seeking an experienced starter to help along a rotation that for now features Chad Billingsley, Hiroki Kuroda, Clayton Kershaw and possibly James McDonald.

"The right veteran starter to add to our mostly young rotation would be a plus," Colletti said.

Johnson could be a fit after bouncing back from back surgery with an 11-10 record and 3.91 ERA in 184 innings last season.

The former USC left-hander, who is five wins shy of 300 and 211 strikeouts away from 5,000, also has experience pitching for Manager Joe Torre, compiling 17-win seasons for the Yankees in 2005 and 2006.

Notes and Quotes
--Unless the Dodgers change their minds, Joe Beimel will be pitching for a new team next season. Beimel's agent, Joe Sroba, said the Dodgers haven't contacted him to express interest in re-signing the durable left-handed reliever, who is a free agent for the first time. "My perception is that they want to go in a different direction," Sroba said. Dodgers General Manager Ned Colletti later confirmed Sroba's perception was correct. Beimel pitched in 216 games over his three seasons with the Dodgers and posted a 3.04 earned-run average. Left-handers hit only .188 against him in 2007, but .278 this year. Sroba said his client has drawn a fair amount of interest from other clubs. Detroit, St. Louis, San Francisco and Colorado have been reported to be among those interested.

--The Rafael Furcal sweepstakes, accelerating at a rapid pace, appears to be shaping up as a Bay Area showdown between the A's and Giants. "It's moving pretty fast," Dodgers general manager Ned Colletti told FOXSports.com on Friday. "I don't know if we're going to be in it or not." The Dodgers want to retain Furcal, who is a favorite of manager Joe Torre, but might be reluctant to meet the player's desire for a four-year contract. A team's willingness to offer Furcal a fourth year likely will be the difference-maker in the negotiations, major-league sources say. Both the A's and Giants were satisfied by what they saw in Furcal's medical records, sources say. Both teams also might want to move sooner rather than later on Furcal, fearing that a delay could draw the Braves and Cubs into the negotiations.

--CF Andruw Jones, who was activated from the 60-day disabled list earlier this month, is expected to begin playing winter ball in the Dominican Republic in early December. Jones has been working out with a trainer at his suburban Atlanta home in an attempt to shed excess weight. He now will try to work out whatever kinks in his hitting mechanics caused him to bat just .158, with three homers and 14 RBIs, in the majors this year.

--SS Rafael Furcal apparently still hasn't received a formal offer from the Dodgers, even though the club is believed to feel some sense of urgency to re-sign him. Furcal is reportedly being pursued by Oakland, San Francisco and the Chicago Cubs, all of which may have made formal offers to him. The Dodgers probably aren't looking to sign Furcal for more than two years because of the impending emergence of top shortstop prospect Ivan De Jesus Jr.

--C Russell Martin isn't moving to third base, a switch that has been speculated on in some corners this winter. Manager Joe Torre said recently that Martin is the Dodgers' catcher and that he brings a unique ability to combine defensive skills behind the plate with the ability to hit in the middle of the lineup. Martin has been an All-Star each of the past two seasons.

--LF Manny Ramirez finished fourth in National League Most Valuable Player balloting despite the fact he spent exactly two months of the regular season in the league, playing 53 regular-season games for the Dodgers. Still, it was hard to argue that he wasn't one of the league's four "most valuable" players given the way his arrival turned around the Dodgers' season. Ramirez's numbers with the Dodgers prorated over a full season would have been 52 home runs and 162 RBI, and his .489 on-base percentage and .743 slugging percentage for the Dodgers would have led the NL.

--RHP Yhency Brazoban was activated from the 60-day disabled list earlier this month. The one-time closer for the Dodgers has appeared in nine major league games over the past three seasons, none in 2008, because of various injuries and an ever-expanding waistline that made it difficult for him to field his position. Brazoban is eligible for arbitration this winter, and it remains to be seen whether he will be non-tendered.

--LHP Victor Garate, LHP Brent Leach, RHP Travis Schlichting, RHP Jesus Castillo and OF Jamie Hoffmann were added to the Dodgers' 40-man roster. Garate's total of 150 strikeouts for low Class A Great Lakes and high Class A Inland Empire were tops in the Los Angeles farm system. Garate, 24, went a combined 9-3 with a 2.79 ERA. The club also has reinstated from the 60-day disabled list infielder Tony Abreu, outfielder Andruw Jones, and right-handers Mario Alvarez, Yhency Brazoban, and Jason Schmidt. 

By The Numb3rs: 90 -- Dollars for a premium seat behind home plate for Dodgers home games at the team's new spring training facility in Glendale, Ariz., which the Dodgers will share with the Chicago White Sox beginning next spring. The price is almost twice the $46 the Boston Red Sox charged for a similar seat in Fort Myers, Fla., this year, the highest-priced ticket at any spring training venue in 2008.

Quote to Note: "I have never been to Triple-A, but this is definitely better than any Double-A league. In the Southern League, I saw some great hitters. But here, you're seeing a level of pitching that you don't see on an everyday basis during the (minor league) season. This is definitely the highest level I have ever played at besides the big leagues in spring training. These guys are the elite." -- Dodgers catching prospect Lucas May, on the Arizona Fall League.


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