Heyward on Wednesday shared a photo of him as a kid in McDonough, Georgia wearing a Dodgers cap, the team he joined on December 8.
Heyward only played 152 games in 2021-22 combined, having missed time on the injured list with a strained left hamstring, finger inflammation, a concussion, and right knee inflammation. The knee injury ended Heyward’s 2022 season in June.
Now 33, Heyward is trying to get back on track as a non-roster invitee to spring training with Los Angeles. Should he make the team, the Dodgers would only be responsible for the major league minimum salary of $720,000, with the Cubs picking up the balance of his $22-million salary after releasing Heyward in November.
“They have a reputation for doing things in a special way, getting the most out of everyone involved,” Heyward said by phone this week in his first interview since signing with the team. “For them to reach out to me, and want me to have an opportunity to be part of that process, that made it that much easier.”
- The Dodgers’ interest in Dansby Swanson is real, says Ken Rosenthal at The Athletic, who also notes the path for the shortstop to land in Los Angeles is unlikely. But perhaps more notable in Rosenthal’s report was LA’s interest in trading for a center fielder, mentioning Bryan Reynolds of the Pirates, Alek Thomas of the D-backs, Dylan Carlson of St. Louis, and the Mariners’ Jarred Kelenic as potential fits.
- Fabian Ardaya at The Athletic took stock of the Dodgers roster, and guessed a potential opening day roster for Los Angeles, which includes Heyward and “a veteran outfielder to be named.”
- How major league managers and executives will react to the upcoming rule changes in 2023 — including the pitch clock — was examined by Jorge Castillo at the Los Angeles Times.
- Ben Clemens this week at FanGraphs used federal interest rates and inflation to explain the spate of exceedingly-long contracts signed by top-end free agents this offseason.
- Speaking of those long contracts, Marc Normandin in his newsletter argues that none of the MLB deals signed this winter are truly circumventing the competitive balance tax.