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Sources: Dodgers land Zack Greinke
Now the offseason can truly begin.
The move likely will trigger a flurry of activity in both the trade and free-agent markets, and certainly prompt a reaction from the Texas Rangers, who also wanted Greinke.
The terms, first reported by the Los Angeles Times, would be the latest example of the Dodgers flexing their newfound financial muscle, sending their 2013 payroll over $200 million.
Greinke’s average salary of $24.5 million, a record for a pitcher on a multi-year deal, would be the highest ever for a starting pitcher.
But under the Dodgers’ new ownership, price has been no object.
Greinke, 29, will give the Dodgers a formidable complement to left-hander Clayton Kershaw. The team also added another starter Sunday, agreeing to a deal for Korean lefty Ryu Hyun-jin worth $36 million over six years, major-league sources told Jon Paul Morosi of FOXSports.com.
The Dodgers had faced a Sunday 5 p.m. ET deadline to sign Ryu after winning his negotiating rights with a $25.7 million posting fee.
The Dodgers are now in position to trade a starting pitcher, probably lefty Chris Capuano. The team has eight starters set to earn at least $6 million each next season, including two who are physically questionable: righty Chad Billingsley and lefty Ted Lilly.
The Rangers, who made a spirited push for Greinke, will be forced to regroup — perhaps focus on re-signing free-agent outfielder Josh Hamilton and trading for a starting pitcher.
Plan A for the Rangers was to sign Greinke and trade for Arizona Diamondbacks right fielder Justin Upton. Tampa Bay Rays righty James Shields, New York Mets righty R.A. Dickey are among the pitchers that the Rangers are considering in trades.
Beyond that, the signing of Greinke also will help establish the market for the other top free-agent starting pitchers — notably, right-handers Anibal Sanchez, Kyle Lohse and Edwin Jackson.
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