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Dodgers Decline 2012 Options On Casey Blake, Jon Garland

The Beard, coming off neck surgery in September, will be a free agent after the World Series.
The Beard, coming off neck surgery in September, will be a free agent after the World Series.

In a pair of expected moves on Tuesday, the Dodgers declined the 2012 club options for both Casey Blake and Jon Garland, both of whom spent multiple stints on the disabled list this year and saw their 2011 seasons end early with surgery.

Blake was in the final year of a three-year, $17.5 million contract he signed with the Dodgers before the 2009 season. This year was a nightmare campaign for Blake, who played in just 63 games and hit .252/.342/.371 with four home runs, also known as numbers Juan Uribe would have killed for. Blake began the season on the disabled list with a back injury, then later missed a month with an infected left elbow. In July he battled neck problems that would eventually end his season, but not after Blake played 18 games in August. Blake had neck surgery in September.

The Dodgers will pay Blake a buyout of $1.25 million, compared to what would have been a $6 million salary for 2012.

Blake hit .260/.338/.431 with 75 doubles and 49 home runs in 406 games in his nearly three and half years as a Dodger. He started 366 games at third base, the fifth-most by a Los Angeles Dodger, one behind Pedro Guerrero for fourth.

Garland came into last offseason having started at least 32 games for nine straight years, but also had an MRI that showed years of wear and tear that prevented him from receiving a multi-year deal. The Dodgers paid him a guaranteed $5 million for his one season, which includes a buyout of $500,000 of his 2012 option.

Garland strained his oblique in spring training and missed one start at the beginning of the year. He made nine starts for the Dodgers, going 1-5 with a 4.33 ERA in 54 innings before succumbing to a shoulder injury. He had shoulder surgery in July, which prevented Garland from reaching the 190 innings required for his $8 million 2012 option to automatically vest. By not reaching those 190 innings, the option became a standard club option, which the Dodgers declined on Tuesday.

Blake and Garland are two of 10 pending Dodgers free agents. For a thorough Dodgers roster breakdown, click here.

In addition, the Dodgers also outrighted Eugenio Velez, he of the 0-for-37 season and MLB record 0 for his last 46, to Triple A Albuquerque, removing him from the 40-man roster.