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Dodgers mulling a run at Scott Rolen

January 15, 2013|By Bill Shaikin
  • The Dodgers have had internal discussions about pursuing third baseman Scott Rolen, according to a person familiar with the team's thinking.
The Dodgers have had internal discussions about pursuing third baseman… (David Zalubowski / Associated…)

The Dodgers have had internal discussions about whether to pursue third baseman Scott Rolen, according to a person familiar with the team's thinking.

The team has not reached out to Rolen to gauge his interest, the person said. Rolen previously has preferred to play close to his Indiana home.

With dozens of free agents unsigned as spring training approaches, the Dodgers are evalauting which available players might fit their needs.

The potential interest in Rolen underscores the uncertainty on the left side of the Dodgers' infield. Rolen, 37, batted .245 with eight home runs in 92 games for the Cincinnati Reds last season.

The Reds plan to use Todd Frazier at third base this season, but they have invited Rolen to consider a reserve role. The Cincinnati Enquirer reported Tuesday that the seven-time All-Star has yet to tell the Reds whether he plans to play or retire.

It is unlikely that the Dodgers would guarantee Rolen playing time, but opportunity could arise. The Dodgers plan to enter spring training with Hanley Ramirez as their starting shortstop and Luis Cruz as their starting third baseman, but they have explored depth signings at both positions during the off-season.

The Dodgers had hoped that Ramirez would play winter ball to work on his defense, but he appeared only as a designated hitter. Dee Gordon, who started last season as the Dodgers' shortstop, made nine errors in 29 games in winter ball.

Cruz, who can play shortstop or third base, batted .173 in 19 games in winter ball, with a .398 OPS.

In 40 career games at Dodger Stadium, Rolen has batted .338 with a .955 OPS.

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