GLENDALE, Ariz.-- Manny Ramirez is now asking the Dodgers for a two-year contract including deferred monies with end a value of 43.5 million, according to a statement emailed to the media by Scott Boras. Ramirez's previous request was for two years, $45 million, with no money deferred.
According to the email, the Dodgers, who offered a $45 million contract with a value of $42 million, have yet to respond. It appears the sides are now about $1.5 million apart in their offers.
"We have continued to work with Ned (Colletti), and the Dodgers to do away with artificial barriers to get a deal completed. There is no issue with deferred money being part of any part of the contract. We just want to make sure the value is stated accurately and appropriately … We have yet to hear from them on our last three offers," Boras said.
Dodgers owner Frank McCourt at the opener of the club's new spring training facility here said the sides are "starting from scratch," although McCourt concede they are not that far apart monetarily.
Today's signings are in, and the cost-conscious Florida Marlins get to save some more money. They have renewed pitcher Anibal Sanchez, who's thrown a no-hitter and is expected to be part of their starting rotation, at the major-league minimum $400,000.
Righthanded reliever Juan Cruz signed a two-year, $6 million deal with the Royals, the club announced. There's also a team option in Year 3 for $4.5 million, with a $500,000 buyout.
As a reliever who earned Type A status, Cruz's free agency turned into something of a controversy, and he engendered enough sympathy for MLB to approve the sign-and-trade option to circumvent the issue of a signing team having to surrender a first-round draft choice. But after a long wait, Cruz got his deal the old-fashioned way, by signing with the Royals.
The Diamondbacks, Cruz's former team, will get the No. 1 draft choice attached to Type A free agents. The Royals, meanwhile, have substantially improved their bullpen.
The 30-year-old Cruz made his debut with the Chicago Cubs in 2001. He has also pitched for the Atlanta Braves and Oakland Athletics, compiling a 29-31 record with a 4.00 ERA in 297 outings, including 38 starts.
To make room for Cruz on the 40-man roster, the Royals designated for assignment utility player Esteban German, who hit .245 in 89 games last season.
Giants Cy Young pitcher Tim Lincecum, who signed for $650,000, and White Sox outfielder Carlos Quentin, who signed for $550,000, are among several top young players who aren't yet eligible for salary arbitration were inked Wednesday to deals.
Angels pitcher Joe Saunders signed for $475,000, Cubs reliever Carlos Marmol for $575,000, White Sox pitcher Gavin Floyd for $520,000 and Cubs infielder Ryan Theriot for $500,000. All of those players signed split contracts, so in the unlikely event they are demoted during the season, they will be paid at a lower rate. In all six cases, that rate is somewhere between $240,000 and $260,000.
The Los Angeles Dodgers made another offer to Manny Ramirez on Wednesday, SI.com confirmed.
The Dodgers' latest offer is like their original offer in that it's for $45 million over two years, but the new twist is that Ramirez could opt out after one year. Ramirez would be paid $25 million in 2009 and $20 million next season if he exercises his player option.
This proposal may be more enticing for Ramirez because it would give him the ability to become a free agent next winter while allowing him the option of staying two years. It is believed the opt-out was added at Ramirez's reqest.
There's another upgrade to this offer, as well. In the Dodgers' original $45 million proposal, he was to be paid $15 million the first year and $22.5 million the second year, with a team option for $22.5 million with a $7.5 million buyout for the third year.
Ramirez was initially thought to be seeking a four- or five-year deal, starting at $25 million per season.
Ramirez rejected a one-year, $25 million proposal from Los Angeles three weeks ago. The team also offered him salary arbitration in December, but Ramirez turned that down, too.