On Thursday morning, the Los Angeles Dodgers saw four players from their 40-man roster become free agents. Hyun-Jin Ryu, Rich Hill and Russell Martin are officially no longer under contract, as is David Freese, who previously announced his decision to retire.
Later that day, a report surfaced that Kenley Jansen is planning to opt into the final two years of his contract rather than test free agency himself. Had he declined his player option, the right-hander would have left $38 million on the table.
One more immediate piece of business remained in the Dodgers needing to decide whether to exercise Jedd Gyorko’s $13 million team option for the 2020 season or make him a free agent by invoking a $1 million buyout.
Coming off an ineffective and injury-ridden 2019 season, the Dodgers have additionally declined their option on Gyorko, as he was named among the updated list of free agents — now at 154 players — released by the MLB Players Association on Sunday morning.
Gyorko began the 2019 season with the St. Louis Cardinals and opened up the year on the 10-day injured list due to a right calf strain. He was then sidelined again on June 8 because of a lower back strain.
Gyorko later suffered a left calf strain while on a rehab assignment and used that opportunity to remove the bone spur that had bothered him for multiple years. He was limited to only 38 games with the Cardinals before being dealt to the Dodgers at the July 31 trade deadline.
Gyorko made his Dodgers debut on Aug. 18 after completing a rehab assignment that saw him spend time with Double-A Tulsa (two games) and Triple-A Oklahoma City (seven). He went 2-for-4 against the Atlanta Braves, which marked his only multi-hit effort with L.A.
Gyorko overall batted just .139/.205/.167 with one double and two RBI in 39 plate appearances for the Dodgers (24 games). He was subsequently left off the club’s National League Division Series roster against the Washington Nationals.
Even though they declined his team option, the Dodgers could still conceivably bring back Gyorko for another year on more team-friendly terms. He is a career .267/.341/.455 hitter against left-handed pitching and can help fill a similar role Freese served on the field.