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BASEBALL : Dodgers Might Offer Raises to Farmhands

February 28, 1995|BOB NIGHTENGALE

The Dodgers have begun asking veteran minor leaguers if they would become replacement players for more money.

When most minor leaguers rejected the invitation to join the replacement team, the club began talking about renegotiating minor-league contracts.

"I think a lot of us would change our minds if the money was right," one pitcher said. "It's not worth it to cut our throats for $3,000 a month, but if you raise that to about $10,000 a month, you've got a whole different story.

"We'll see what happens, because they told us they need to add some experience on their team."

Charlie Blaney, director of minor-league operations, confirmed that he and Executive Vice President Fred Claire have talked to players about renegotiating but added that no decisions have been made.

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The Dodgertown ticket office, normally packed with customers at lunch hour during the first week of spring training games, was empty Monday.

The Dodgers are expecting a crowd of 4,000 to 5,000 on Friday, instead of their usual sellout crowd, for their first home game against the Detroit Tigers.

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The Dodgers could find themselves scrambling when the strike ends because of the makeup of their roster.

On their 40-man roster are 19 foreign players who need visas to work in the United States. The Dodgers have filed the paperwork, but normally it takes about three weeks for it to be processed.

"Hopefully, everything can be expedited in a week but there's really no way of telling," Blaney said.

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