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Sunday, March 27, 2011
Dodgers option Ramon Troncoso

By Tony Jackson
ESPNLosAngeles.com

GLENDALE, Ariz. -- Los Angeles Dodgers right-hander Ramon Troncoso, who as recently as two years ago became a vital part of what was then one of the best bullpens in the majors, officially has failed to make the club this spring.

He was optioned to the minor league side on Sunday morning, the first of what probably will be handful of cuts throughout the day as the Dodgers prepare to break camp on Sunday afternoon.

Troncoso started strong in the Cactus League as he attempted to secure one of three open bullpen spots. But he struggled over his final few appearances, culminating in a shaky ninth inning against the San Diego Padres on Saturday in which he managed to come away with a save despite giving up two hits and a walk while facing six batters.

Troncoso, 28, made the club as a surprise in 2008 after putting together a remarkable spring. In 2009, his first full year in the majors, he made 73 appearances and posted a 2.72 ERA. But he struggled last year, posting a 4.33 ERA and spending much of July and August at Triple-A Albuquerque.

With right-hander Kenley Jansen and non-roster right-hander Mike MacDougal appearing to have secured spots in a bullpen that already included Jonathan Broxton, Hong-Chih Kuo, Matt Guerrier and Blake Hawksworth, the only remaining competitors for the final spot are left-hander Scott Elbert and non-roster right-hander Lance Cormier.

Tony Jackson covers the Dodgers for ESPNLosAngeles.com. Follow him on Twitter.