Relief pitcher Wander Suero cleared waivers and was sent outright to the minors by the Dodgers on Thursday, but the veteran right-hander declined the assignment and instead elected free agency.
With over three years of major league service time (Suero has three years, 144 days), and as someone who was previously outrighted in his career — by the Dodgers, back on May 25 — Suero had the right to decline a minor league assignment.
For practical purposes, the move leaves 39 players on the Dodgers’ 40-man roster, but in reality there are 52 such players, including 13 players on the 60-day injured list or restricted list who don’t yet count against the 40-man roster.
Suero, who turned 32 in September, would have been available for salary arbitration this offseason but is instead now a free agent. From Anthony Franco and Steve Adams at MLB Trade Rumors, Suero was projected to earn $900,000 through arbitration in 2024.
The Dodgers signed the veteran right-hander in January to a minor league contract with a non-roster invitation to spring training, and Suero was called up on May 5. That was one of three stints in the majors this season for Suero, who allowed seven runs in eight innings in his five games, with nine strikeouts and five walks.
Suero had a 3.26 ERA in 47 games with Triple-A Oklahoma City, with 53 strikeouts and 23 walks in 49⅔ innings. He closed out both wins in Oklahoma City’s sweep of Round Rock in the Pacific Coast League championship series.
In five major league seasons with the Nationals and Dodgers, Suero has a 4.75 ERA and 3.89 FIP in 190 games, with 209 strikeouts and 71 walks in 193⅓ innings.