Dodgers fortify infield with Justin Turner

February, 5, 2014
Feb 5
7:13
PM PT
Speaking to reporters Saturday at FanFest, Los Angeles Dodgers general manager Ned Colletti said he expected to have a utility infielder signed within the next five days. Four days later, he had his man.

The Dodgers signed Justin Turner to a minor league deal with an invitation to spring training Wednesday, putting him in the mix to be the team’s primary utility infielder. Dee Gordon, Chone Figgins, Brendan Harris and minor leaguer Miguel Rojas also have designs on that job.

Turner, 29, was non-tendered by the New York Mets in December. He hit .280 with two home runs and 16 RBIs in 200 at-bats last season. Turner generally fares well in defensive metrics. He is a career .263 hitter.

Turned has played all four infield positions over five major league seasons with the Baltimore Orioles and Mets, a key advantage since the Dodgers enter 2014 with an unproven second baseman, Alex Guerrero, and an injury-prone shortstop, Hanley Ramirez.

Turner is a native of Long Beach, Calif., and played college baseball at Cal State Fullerton. He was a seventh-round pick of the Cincinnati Reds in 2006.

Mark Saxon

ESPNLosAngeles.com
Mark Saxon is a staff writer for ESPNLosAngeles.com. He spent six years at the Orange County Register, and began his career at the Oakland Tribune, where he started an 11-year journey covering Major League Baseball. He has also covered colleges, including USC football and UCLA basketball.

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TEAM LEADERS

BA LEADER
Yasiel Puig
BA HR RBI R
.313 13 59 67
OTHER LEADERS
HRA. Gonzalez 17
RBIA. Gonzalez 83
RD. Gordon 69
OPSY. Puig .912
WC. Kershaw 14
ERAC. Kershaw 1.86
SOC. Kershaw 174