Ned Colletti talks Dodgers heading into winter meetings

"Is it Zack with a K or Zach with an H?" - Stephen Dunn

The Dodgers general manager sat down with David Vassegh of KLAC 570 AM on Friday before baseball's winter meetings, which will be held in Nashville from Dec. 3-6.

Dodgers general manager Ned Colletti figures to be a busy man at baseball's winter meetings, which start on Monday in Nashville. The annual four-day excursion is a who's who of baseball at all levels, and next week should provide an abundance of news.

The Dodgers' main concern will likely be starting pitcher Zack Greinke, with whom they met on Thursday. But the top pitcher on the market isn't the only person linked to the Dodgers, who have been rumored to be interested in just about every player. Colletti talked with David Vassegh of KLAC 570 AM, and noted that well over half the rumors we hear just aren't true.

"You've only got a 25-man roster. The number of players we've been tied to, in some ways it's disappointing because there's really a lack of credibility that goes with people who say 'they're in on this player, they're in on this player'," Colletti said. "We're in on a few players, but we're not in on 25% of what's being speculated. We know who we like, and we know what we're trying to accomplish."

Here are some other tidbits from Vassegh's interview with Colletti

  • on Paco Rodriguez, a left-hander vying for a spot in a crowded major league bullpen:

    "Paco was a great story for us, drafted last June and ends up in the big leagues in September. He does lack big league experience, and in fact has a small amount of professional experience. But we're not afraid to put him in a tough spot or put him on our roster if that's how it turns out," Colletti said. "But the season is so long and so many different things come up that you can prepare for but not necessarily predict, that you'll need as much pitching as you can get."

    Translation: Paco, who has options, will likely begin the season in the minors.
  • Colletti mentioned that relief pitcher Javy Guerra, who had arthroscopic surgery on his right shoulder on Nov. 2, "seems to have a lot of interest in him on the market right now."
  • on Chad Billingsley, who has thus far avoided surgery on his torn right elbow ligament.

    "Chad spent a month in Arizona after the season, strengthening his arm and throwing in some simulated games. We ran that as far as we could run it, and now hope nature takes it's course and completely heals his elbow. There is some gamble involved in that, but there is enough documentation and enough history as to what we saw him be able to do that we're willing to take the chance that he's going to be healthy when we get to camp," Colletti said. "He finished his season in November, pitching in simulated games and had his velocity back and was pain free. That's all we can go on right now."
  • Colletti also said members of the training staff have visited Clayton Kershaw, who had a right hip impingement in September that caused him to miss one start and have another one delayed by two days. Colletti said Kershaw is doing fine, and is currently throwing three times per week.
  • In discussing the bench, Colletti specifically mentioned Tony Gwynn Jr. as someone who gave the team versatility as a reserve, which is worth noting because as of now Gwynn, who is signed for $1.15 million in 2013 is not on the 40-man roster.

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