As a follow up to my Which Dodger Will Get the Axe? post, this post is to provide you guys with an update, as the Dodgers made a move today to clear up room on the 40 man roster. We have found out who the player is that is getting the axe, and the answer is in. It’s Russ Mitchell. According to a Ken Rosenthal Tweet The Dodgers have designated Russ Mitchell for assignment.
The Dodgers had to make room on their 40 man roster, which happened to be full. They needed to move someone out in order to make room for newly signed pitcher Todd Coffey. In my last post, I let you all know that the Dodgers actually could have done a move that would have saved everyone by moving disabled pitcher Rubby De La Rosa from the 15-day disabled list to the 60-day disabled list. However the Dodgers chose not to do that, and it’s Russ Mitchell getting the axe, while other DFA candidates Ramon Troncoso and Ivan De Jesus Jr. survive the chopping block and will live to play another day.
As I have said before, players getting cut is just a natural part of Baseball. It’s not a fun part, but it’s a necessary part. We can’t avoid it. Players are going to be cut. When a player like Mitchell is cut though, there is a tinge of sadness. Mitchell has done everything the Dodgers have asked of him, and he is a generally likeable guy. Mitchell played with the Dodgers and split time with the Albuquerque Isotopes last season. Mitchell payed in 15 games in 2010 and 25 games in 2011 for the Dodgers. He had been called up in 2010 as rosters expanded in September, then he was called up last summer because of injuries. Mitchell played in 93 games for the Isotopes in 2011, hitting .283 with 16 home runs in 336 at-bats.
The infielder/outfielder played games at third base, first base, and left field while filling in for the Dodgers while batting .143 and .157 during those two seasons in Blue respectively. Mitchell played most of his time at third base. Mitchell hit four home runs with the Dodgers in 93 at-bats. Mitchell is 27-years old, and he was a 15th round draft pick by the Dodgers in the 2003 amateur draft. Mitchell played at all levels of minor league ball for the Dodgers, hitting 140 home runs and posting a .269/.330/.454 line. Mitchell bats right handed and is from Rome, Georgia.
Mitchell is most known for his game-tying home run in The Fog Game last season during a Dodger inter-league game against the White Sox in Chicago. Mitchell hit the game-tying home run with two outs in the 9th inning, and then he made a game saving play preventing several runs from scoring in the 10th inning helping the Dodgers to a win.
Remember when a player is designated for assignment, he is put up on waivers, and if no one claims him he can return back to the team that cut him. So it is possible that if nobody claims Mitchell, he ends up back in Albuquerque. Mitchell provides a solid glove and some pop to whichever team might claim him. Wherever he goes, we wish Russ all the best. We will never forget his home run in the fog game and his contributions to the Dodgers over the last two seasons will not be forgotten. Good luck Mitchell.