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Rumor Factory Shuts Down

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After three days of blah blah blah we don't have much to show for it. This is what we do know.

1. The Dodgers have their 3rd baseman in Casey Blake. Christina Kahrl who just recently become a BBWAA member breaks down the deal

Signed 4C-R Casey Blake to a three-year, $16.25 million contract, with a $6 million club option (or $1.25 million buyout) for 2012. [12/9]

Now that was pretty easy, and given the relative benefits of investing this kind of commitment in Blake and, say, throwing the money away on a Jack Wilson rental, the relative benefits here seem obvious. I'm not even all that concerned about the stumbling block this erects in front of top prospects like Josh Bell and Pedro Baez, given that both are a few years away from really coming into the big-league picture, and given Blake's convenient positional flexibility. If, by 2011, the Dodgers have Bell ready to take over the hot corner, and have to sort out getting Blake enough at-bats between third, spotting for James Loney against lefties, and stomping around in left, that sounds a lot like one of those nice problems that good teams with depth relish and employ to advantage.

2. The Dodgers have their utility player/platoon mate for DeWitt in Loretta

3. They are still in the hunt for Furcal but it looks less likely as they are offering two years with a bunch of incentives to get to year three.

4. No new news on the Manny front. No one seems interested in him right now but that could change when Teixeira signs. The free agent class has a glut of LF/DH types with Manny leading the class followed by Milton Bradley, Adam Dunn, Bobby Abreu, and Burrell.

5. We lost CC without even making an offer. Our poll yesterday showed that True Blue readers would like us to at least persue Randy Johnson, Ben Sheets, or Oliver Perez but so far we have not made any overtures to any of those pitchers.

6. None of our competitiors in the West did anything of note, though the Diamondbacks did plug the 2nd base hole with Felipe Lopez. Lopez after one bright year with the Reds fell of the cliff while with the Nationals. He rebounded in the 2nd half last year after he was traded to the Cardinals. He has some upside for them but he's no Orlando Hudson.

7. If we thought Ned was out to lunch before, learning that he signed Jason Schmidt knowing he had a partial tear to the rotator cuff just borders on unbelievable. The fact that the entire Dodger management signed off on this deal just makes you shake your head. I was entirely for the signing but after hearing this news I'm left trying to defend it and coming up with nothing.

8. Juan Pierre is still a Dodger even though he has requested a trade.

9. Andruw Jones is still a Dodger and makes his Winter League Debut this week. Based on that picture he does look in great shape.

10. The Yankees like to spend money in a big way when things don't go well for them.

11. In our own division we hold our own but when the big boys get involved we are small fry.  Maybe in the end it was good that we didn't get involved in CC.

12. The Dodgers are dicking around salary wise with Smiling Sammy. I guess several years of outstanding production at bargain prices is no reason to make nice when you hold all the leverage.