Dec 11, 2014 1:56 AM
Dodgers get Kendrick, work to add Rollins
The Associated Press
SAN DIEGO (AP) The Dodgers acquired second baseman Howie Kendrick from the Los Angeles Angels and were working to obtain shortstop Jimmy Rollins from the Philadelphia Phillies in a remake of their middle infield.
In a flurry of moves late Wednesday, the Dodgers dealt All-Star second baseman Dee Gordon, right-hander Dan Haren, infielder Miguel Rojas and a player to be named or cash to the Miami Marlins as part of a seven-player trade for left-hander Andrew Heaney, right-hander Chris Hatcher, infielder Kike Hernandez and catcher Austin Barnes.
The Dodgers then sent Heaney, considered one of baseball's top pitching prospects, to the Angels for Kendrick.
"We started this offseason with a really good base of talent in place coming off an extremely successful NL West division championship," Dodgers president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman said early Thursday. "But as we looked at it and tried to figure out different ways that we can continue to improve the roster, we felt like there were certain areas we could target and certain guys that fit within the scope of what we were trying to do."
Friedman wouldn't say how close he was to finalizing a trade for Rollins or a $48 million, four-year contract with free-agent pitcher Brandon McCarthy. The Dodgers also have been talking about dealing outfielder Matt Kemp to San Diego.
The 31-year-old Kendrick has spent all nine of his big league seasons with the Angels. He hit .293 this year with seven homers, 75 RBIs and 14 steals. Kendrick has a $9.5 million salary next year and then can become a free agent.
Kendrick was selected to his only All-Star team in 2011, and he has been a steady bat in Los Angeles' lineup for six consecutive seasons. Kendrick and shortstop Erick Aybar have been the Angels' double-play combination for the past half-decade.
"It'll be difficult to replace Howie," Angels general manager Jerry Dipoto said. "We just felt like one year of control on Howie as a pending free agent at the end of the '15 season was impossible to walk away from Andrew Heaney and six years of control, and what we think is a left-hand starter who has top-of-the-rotation upside."
To help make up for the loss of Kendrick, the Angels acquired 25-year-old infielder Josh Rutledge from the Colorado Rockies for minor league right-hander Jairo Diaz. In 266 games over three seasons, Rutledge is a .259 hitter with 19 homers and 89 RBIs.
Rollins, the 2007 NL MVP, would take over at shortstop for Hanley Ramirez, who signed an $88 million, four-year contract with Boston. The 36-year-old Rollins has spent his entire 15-year career with the Phillies, becoming a three-time All-Star and helping Philadelphia win the 2008 World Series title.
Rollins hit .243 last season with 17 homers and 55 RBIs.
Rollins is owed $11 million next year in the final season of a contract that started in 2012. As a 10-year veteran who has spent five seasons with his current team, Rollins cannot be traded without his consent
The 26-year-old Gordon led the major leagues last season with 12 triples and 64 stolen bases, mostly batting leadoff for the Dodgers. He hit .289 with two homers, 92 runs, 34 RBIs and a .329 on-base percentage.
He joins a batting order that includes NL home run champion Giancarlo Stanton, given a record $325 million, 13-year contract.
"Our goal was to add another bat. Dee wasn't exactly the bat we were expecting to add," Marlins general manager Mike Hill said. "But when you can access that type of game-changing speed, for who we are, we just thought it made a lot of sense."
Marlins owner Jeffrey Loria called it "lightning and thunder."
"It's going to be a lot of fun," he said after using an old-fashioned flip phone to take photos of Hill holding a news conference in the lobby of the winter meetings hotel. "All we've got to do is play well and start to win, and people will be responsive."
Haren went 13-11 with a 4.02 ERA as the NL West champion Dodgers' No. 4 starter. He is owed $11 million for next season and said last month he might retire if traded away from the area.
"I'm taking my talents to bed. Long day," he tweeted.
Hernandez made his big league debut this year, playing 42 games for Houston and Miami. He hit .248 in 42 games with three homers and 14 RBIs.
Hatcher has appeared in 81 games over four seasons and is 0-4 with a 4.80 ERA.
Heaney, a 23-year-old left-hander, made his big league debut for the Marlins in June and was 0-3 with a 5.83 ERA in five starts and two relief appearances. He humorously tweeted: "Well, @Dodgers we had a good run! Great to be a part of such a storied franchise. #thanksforthememories," then added: "Can't wait to join the @Angels and get started with an amazing Org. Thank you for this opportunity and lets go Halos!!!"
Barnes, 24, split the season between Class A and Double-A.
The southern California neighbors made their second swap in two days. On Tuesday, the Angels received catcher Drew Butera from the Dodgers for a player to be named or cash.
After five straight NL East titles from 2007-11, the Phillies dropped to .500 in 2012, then to 73-89 records in each of the last two seasons. Philadelphia finally seems ready to jettison some of its old core and start rebuilding.
NOTE: The Dodgers designated catcher Ryan Lavarnway for assignment.
AP Sports Writers Ronald Blum and Greg Beacham contributed to this report.