Casey Blake, Beard Staying With Dodgers

No general manager is landing the biggest fish of the free agent market, but some of the smaller fish are getting hooked at the winter meetings.

So it goes with the Dodgers, who will bring back Casey Blake for three years at $17 million. Not a bad deal for the 35-year-old first time free agent, it should be enough to buy him a quality beard trimmer.

Blake didn’t put up spectacular numbers with the Dodgers last year -- he hit .251 with 10 home runs and 23 runs batted in 58 games -- but he solidified third base, a position that had been a trouble spot. Manager Joe Torre often credited Blake as much as he did Ramirez for the Dodgers turn around mid-season.

As for Ramirez, Dodgers GM Ned Colletti and agent Scott Boras talked Monday night and said nice things to each other, but neither backed off their financial position.

The Dodgers have offered a two-year, $45 million contract with a third-year option of $15 million. Boras and Manny apparently still think this is 2005 and want a six-year deal for the 37-year-old slugger with more than $20 million per year. Not even the heads of the big three automakers would make that crazy a business deal.

So, everyone waits.

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