Hanley talks extension, seeking relief help + in on Cuban trio of Gonzalez, Hinojosa, Alvarez

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Hanley Ramirez would like to remain a Dodger for life, reports Dylan Hernandez of the Los Angeles Times.

Hanley Ramirez said that if the Dodgers approach him at any time about extending his contract, he would be open to talking.

“Definitely, because I want to stay here,” Ramirez said. “I want to stay here forever.”

Ramirez will become a free agent at the end of the 2014 season. He will earn $15.5 million this year and $16 million next.

“Hopefully, I could stay here the rest of my career,” Ramirez said. “But I can’t control that.”

Hanley will be 31 by the 2015 season, and locking up a player after 30 who already can’t play his current position and has injury question marks is generally a bad idea. That said, looking at the free agent class, there isn’t much to work with and he may be the best option.

Yes, Corey Seager could be ready sometime during his extension (big IF), but if he sticks at shortstop, then Hanley can play the position he should be playing anyway: third.

All in all, the team could do worse than extending Hanley for a few years, though I think it’s wise to wait him out to see if he can prove that he will stay healthy.

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The Dodgers are in the market for relief help, and the Brewers bullpen may have what they’re looking for, according to Danny Knobler of CBS Sports.

A Dodgers scout was dispatched to Milwaukee this week, sent to look at the three relievers the Brewers are currently marketing. While the Brewers have told teams that closer Jim Henderson won’t be dealt, they are more than willing to discuss John Axford, Francisco Rodriguez and left-hander Mike Gonzalez.

The Dodgers aren’t alone in their need for bullpen help, and their scout wasn’t alone in watching the Brewers trio. The Red Sox, Orioles and Tigers also have scouts in Milwaukee this week. The Dodgers’ four National League West rivals have also shown interest at times in the Brewer relievers, as well as in starter Yovani Gallardo.

John Axford, the once front-line closer, hasn’t posted an FIP below 4 in two years and has been worth negative WAR over that same time-span. K-Rod has regained much of the form he lost in 2012, but volatile doesn’t begin to describe him, both on and off the field. Mike Gonzalez, meanwhile, is a solid reliever (2.95 ERA/3.38 FIP Career), but has command issues.

Honestly, none of them are upgrades over Kenley Jansen or Paco Rodriguez, and it’s debatable as to whether they would be better than Ronald Belisario. As such, unless they give up close to nothing, I fail to see the point in pursuing this trio.

The Dodgers have enough reclamation projects, no?

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Cuban defectors RHP Miguel Alfredo Gonzalez and RHP Dalier Hinojosa have both been cleared by the government and are ready to sign, according to Jesse Sanchez of MLB.com (1,2).

The Dodgers interest in Gonzalez has been reported for a while now, and he’s been touted as potentially MLB-ready. He has the price tag to match, and he may cost as much as $60 million to sign (via Knobler). For what it’s worth, Peter Gammons relays the non-shocking news that the Dodgers are the favorites.

The 27-year-old Hinojosa has interested the Dodgers with his low-90s fastball (plus a two-seam) and four-pitch mix that includes a slider, curve, and change. There’s been no indication as to his cost yet.

Neither player is beholden to the international bonus pool money.

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Keeping with the Cuban theme, 24-year-old OF Dariel Alvarez was declared a free agent recently as well, and the Dodgers are in on him, according to Sanchez.

On Thursday, Alvarez, 24, a right-handed hitter who played for Camaguey in Serie Nacional, told MLB.com that he was declared a free agent by the Commissioner’s Office in January and cleared by the U.S. government to enter into a contract with a big league club a month later. He said a change in representation is part of the reason his appearance on the market has been delayed.

“I am ready,” said Alvarez, who is in Florida on a work visa. “I can sign. Just waiting on the best opportunity.”

On Wednesday, Alvarez starred in an open showcase in front of a group of scouts that included representatives from the Dodgers, Rangers, Red Sox, Royals, Mariners, D-backs, Padres, and Yankees in Ft. Lauderdale, Fla. The Marlins did not attend the workout.

Alvarez defected from Cuba last summer and later played professionally in Vera Cruz, Mexico. The 6-foot-2, 190 pound can play all three outfield positions and has impressed Major League scouts with his above-average arm.

Like his two Cuban counterparts, he is not beholden to the international bonus pool limit.

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