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Darin Ruf signs with Samsung Lions in Korea

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Move would clear a spot on Dodgers’ 40-man roster

Cleveland Indians v Philadelphia Phillies Photo by Hunter Martin/Getty Images

The Dodgers need to clear two spots on the 40-man roster to finalize the recent acquisitions of Chase Utley and Franklin Gutierrez, and it appears one of those openings will happen Friday. Outfielder and first baseman Darin Ruf has reportedly agreed to a deal with the Samsung Lions in the Korean Baseball Organization.

Ruf signed a one-year contract with Samsung worth $1.1 million, per Yonhap News. That's roughly double what Ruf would have earned in the majors in 2017, as he just missed qualifying as a Super Two for salary arbitration this winter.

The Dodgers haven't announced anything yet regarding Ruf, but he was likely either released to pursue this move, or sold to Samsung for cash. We should find out later on Friday.

Ruf was one of the few inflexible parts of the Dodgers position player roster depth, in that he was out of options, and would had to have been exposed to waivers had he not made the club in spring training.

The 30-year-old right-hander played in just 43 games for the Phillies in 2016, hitting .205/.236/.337 with three home runs. He's a career .299/.379/.542 hitter against left-handed pitching, including .286/.267/.429 in limited duty (30 plate appearances) last year. The Dodgers acquired Ruf along with utility man Darnell Sweeney in November for Howie Kendrick.

Many Dodgers position players are already in camp at Camelback Ranch, but the official reporting day is Monday, with the the club’s first full squad workout set for Tuesday.