Dodgers 2012 Minor League Deals

Griff Erickson, seen here at the 2011 Dodgers winter development camp at Dodger Stadium, was invited to his first major league spring training camp. (Photo: Brandon Lennox | True Blue LA)

This is a list of players signed to a minor league deal by the Dodgers for the 2012 season, including those who received a non-roster invitation to spring training. The Dodgers have had several players signed to minor league deals in the last two years eventually make the big league team, with varying degrees of success.

In 2010, the Dodgers had eight players signed to minor league deals play for the club, including four who made the team out of spring training: Garret Anderson, Ramon Ortiz, Russ Ortiz, and Jeff Weaver

In 2011, the Dodgers had eight players signed to minor league deals play for the club, including four who made the team out of spring training: Aaron Miles, Mike MacDougal, Hector Gimenez, and Lance Cormier.

A great source to check for minor league transactions is Baseball America's minor league free agent tracker.

This page will continually be updated throughout the offseason and through the end of spring training.

2012 NRI Count:
21 20 18 11 10 7 6 4

Pitchers

Jose Ascanio RHP
2012 age: 27
Ascanio has pitched 43 games in relief in parts of four big league seasons, including putting up a not-so-convenient 7.11 ERA in all of eight games with the Pittsburgh Pirates in 2011. He spent most of his year in Triple A Indianapolis, where he put up a 4.91 ERA in 30 games, including five starts. He struck out 50 batters in 44 innings in Indy, and has struck out more than a batter per inning in the minors over the last five years. In 46 major league innings, Ascanio has 41 strikeouts and 21 walks.

Ascanio failed his physical and left camp on February 23.

Alberto Castillo LHP
2012 age: 36
Not to be confused with the long-time major league catcher of the same name, this Cuban southpaw was with the Arizona Diamondbacks last season after three years with the Baltimore Orioles. In 60 1/3 career major league innings, Castillo has a 4.33 ERA 27 walks and 48 strikeouts. However he is not a LOOGY, as left-handed batters have hit .296/.377/.519 off him in his career. He has spent most of the last four seasons in Triple A, putting up a 2.86 ERA in 160 innings while averaging a strikeout per inning and having a strikeout-to-walk ratio of better than 3-to-1.

Castillo was released on March 18.

Matt Chico LHP
2012 age: 29
The former USC Trojan spent the last five and a half years in the Washington Nationals organization after being part of the haul for Livan Hernandez way back in 2006. A starter for most of his career, Chico moved to the bullpen in 2011, pitching in relief in 25 of his 27 games across three levels with a cumulative 5.87 ERA. He has pitched five major league innings in the last three years.

Chico was reassigned to minor league camp on March 18.

John Grabow LHP
2012 age: 33
The left-hander signed with the Dodgers on December 19, 2011. He was 3-1 with a 4.76 ERA in 2011, with 28 walks and 38 strikeouts in 62 innings with the Chicago Cubs. It was the first time in his eight-year career that he had a strikeout rate below seven per nine innings.

Grabow exercised his opt-out clause on March 26 and became a free agent.

Angel Guzman RHP
2012 age: 30
The right-hander had surgery to repair a torn ligament in his right shoulder and missed all of 2010. He came back in 2011 to post a 4.04 ERA in 35 innings in Class A with five walks and 28 strikeouts. He struck out 8.2 batters per nine innings in four major league seasons from 2006-2009, the same as his career rate in the minors.

Guzman was reassigned to minor league camp on March 24.

Wilfredo Ledezma LHP
2012 age: 31
Signed by the Dodgers on December 2, 2011, Ledezma has pitched in the majors in each of the past nine seasons for a total of seven teams. In 2011 he was limited to just six innings with the Toronto Blue Jays, but did strikeout 64 in 48 innings while putting up a 4.50 ERA with Triple A Las Vegas in the hitter-friendly Pacific Coast League.

Ledezma was reassigned to minor league camp on March 24.

Shane Lindsay RHP
2012 age: 27
At the end of his seventh minor league season, the Australian Lindsay got his cup of coffee in the big leagues, pitching six innings in four games with the White Sox. In his minor league career, Lindsay has struck out 12.2 per nine innings but has also walked 6.8 per nine. In 366 minor league innings, Lindsay has allowed nine home runs.

Lindsay was reassigned to minor league camp on March 15.

Fernando Nieve RHP
2012 age: 29
Nieve last pitched in the majors in 2010 with the New York Mets. He began 2011 in the Houston Astros' system but was released after just three starts so he could sign with the Doosan Bears in Korea. In 186 major league innings over four seasons, Nieve has a 4.61 ERA with 84 walks and 143 strikeouts.

Nieve was reassigned to minor league camp on March 24.

Scott Rice LHP
2012 age: 30
The Simi Valley native was drafted in the supplemental first round of the 1999 draft by the Baltimore Orioles, just seven picks after the Dodgers drafted Jason Repko. Rice has pitched for 13 minor league seasons, including 2011 in Double A with the Chattanooga Lookouts. Rice put up a 1.95 ERA in 34 games in relief for the Lookouts, with 42 strikeouts in 51 innings.

Will Savage RHP
2012 age: 27
Savage has spent the last two years starting in the Dodgers' system, including spending all of 2011 with the Lookouts. He put up a 3.95 ERA in 141 innings in Double A last season and had the stats of a control artist, with just 27 walks but also only 87 strikeouts. Savage was drafted by the Philadelphia Phillies in the 26th round in 2006.

Savage was reassigned to minor league camp on March 18.

Ryan Tucker RHP
2012 age: 25
The Burbank native pitched five innings in relief in 2011 for the Texas Rangers, his first major league action since a brief stint with the 2008 Florida Marlins. In 29 games with Triple A Round Rock of the Pacific Coast League in 2011, including eight starts, Tucker put up a 5.40 ERA with 64 strikeouts and 31 walks in 68 innings.

Tucker was reassigned to minor league camp on March 18.

Jamey Wright RHP
2012 age: 37
Wright last started a game in 2007, but he is in camp for a relief role, the same role he has had for the last four years. He put up a 3.16 ERA in 60 games in relief for the 2011 Mariners, and has become a ground ball machine out of the bullpen, with a groundout to flyout ratio of better than two to one in each of the last four years.

Position Players

Josh Bard C
Bats B, Throws R
2012 age: 34

Bard hit .210/.256/.333 in 86 plate appearances in 2011 with the Seattle Mariners, but spent the bulk of the year in Triple A, hitting .301/.359/.407 in 250 PA in Triple A Tacoma. Bard will earn a reported $750,000 if he makes the team, per Jon Heyman of CBS Sports. In parts of 10 major league seasons, Bard has hit .254/.320/.385, including .277/.330/.430 while batting right-handed.

Bard was released on March 29.

Griff Erickson C
Bats B, Throws R
2012 age: 24

Erickson was drafted by the Dodgers in the 15th round in 2006. His bat started to show some life in the last few years. He hit .305/.408/.491 in 63 games with Class A Rancho Cucamonga in the Cal League, then was promoted to Double A Chattanooga, where he hit .275/.329/.479 with seven home runs in 41 games. Erickson was rated by True Blue LA readers as the 19th best Dodgers prospect.

Erickson was reassigned to minor league camp on March 18.

Matt Wallach C
Bats L, Throws R
2012 age: 26

Wallach, the son of Dodgers third base coach Tim Wallach, was drafted by the Dodgers in the 22nd round in 2007. A defensive catcher with a good eye, Wallach hit .247/.396/.355 with 38 walks in 244 plate appearances with Double A Chattanooga in 2011. Wallach was rated by Brandon Lennox as the Dodgers' 65th best prospect heading into the 2011 season.

Wallach was reassigned to minor league camp on March 18.

Jeff Baisley 3B/1B
Bats R, Throws R
2012 age: 29

Baisley hit .303/.355/.483 with 31 doubles and 20 home runs for Triple A Salt Lake in the Angels' system in 2011, driving in 100 runs in 134 games. He has 1,521 plate appearances in Triple A, where he has hit .284/.347/.454. He played in 14 games for the 2008 Oakland Athletics, hitting .256/.319/.279.

Baisley was reassigned to minor league camp on March 18.

Luis Cruz SS/2B
Bats R, Throws R
2012 age: 28

Cruz hit .273/.301/.433 in 69 games for Triple A Round Rock in the Texas Rangers' system in 2011, then the Sonora native took his talents to the Mexican League, hitting .406/.449/.781 in 16 games. Cruz played a total of 56 major league games from 2008-2010 with the Pittsburgh Pirates and Milwaukee Brewers, hitting a combined .221/.275/.260.

Josh Fields 3B/OF
Bats R, Throws R
2012 age: 29
Kevin Goldstein of Baseball prospectus reported the Fields signing on January 4, 2011. Fields began his 2011 season with Triple A Colorado Springs in the Colorado Rockies system and hit .365/.429/.674 with 20 doubles and 11 home runs in 50 games before getting released in late June so he could sign with the Yomiuri Giants in Japan. Fields did not enjoy the success in Japan that he did in Colorado Springs, hitting just .202/.241/.312 with two home runs in 40 games. Fields hit .244/.308/.480 with 23 home runs in 100 games in 2007 for the Chicago White Sox, but hit just .229/.296/.353 with 10 home runs in 106 major league games since then.

Russ Mitchell 3B/1B
Bats R, Throws R
2012 age: 27

Mitchell was designated for assignment on February 6, 2012 to make room for Todd Coffey on the 40-man roster. Mitchell cleared waivers and was outrighted to Triple A, but was invited to big league camp. Mitchell has hit .151 with four home runs in 40 games in parts of two seasons with the Dodgers.

Mitchell was reassigned to minor league camp on March 15.

Lance Zawadzki SS/3B/2B
Bats B, Throws R
2012 age: 27

Zawadski hit .233/.288/.383 in 91 games for Triple A Omaha in the Kansas City Royals system, playing 53 games at shortstop, 21 games at third base, and four games at second base. In 600 plate appearances in the Pacific Coast League, Zawadzki has a .292 on-base percentage. He got a cup of coffee in 2010 for the Padres, hitting .200/.300/.257 in 20 games.

Zawadzki was reassigned to minor league camp on March 18.

Cory Sullivan OF
Bats B, Throws R
2012 age: 32

The former Colorado Rockie with 190 career games started in center field began 2011 with Triple A Lehigh Valley in the Philadelphia Phillies' system. After hitting .210/.336/.250 in 36 games in Triple A, Sullivan was released in perhaps the cruelest way possible: to make room on the roster for Scott Podsednik.

Sullivan was released on March 29.

Be sure to check the left sidebar of the front page throughout the offseason as this page gets updated.

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