No surprise: A.J. Ellis and Ronald Belisario, who are eligible for salary arbitration, will both be tendered contracts by the #Dodgers.
— Dylan Hernandez (@dylanohernandez) November 30, 2012
A.J. Ellis, the 31-year old catcher who finally broke through last season to become the Dodgers’ starting backstop, made $490,000 last season. A.J. played in 133 games for the Dodgers in 2012, and he finished with a .270/.373/.414 line and 13 homeruns, 52 RBIs, and 65 walks. He also threw out would be base stealers at a 33% clip. A.J. Ellis is slated to be the Dodgers Opening Day catcher for 2013. There has been rumors of the Dodgers interest in A.J. Pierzynski, but I highly doubt they will go that route. Tim Federowicz should be the second catcher behind Ellis next season.
Ronald Belisario had quite the comeback season for the
Dodgers in 2012. The 29-year old Venezuelan reliever finally overcame his substance abuse problems, and he returned to his 2009 form. Beli had a 8-1 record last season, and he finished the year with an impressive 2.54 ERA. He pitched 71 innings last year, a career high, and he only walked 29 batters while striking out 69. Last season, Belisario made $480,000. How much will his nasty sinker be worth to the Dodgers? Like Ellis, Belisario is due for a raise. Next season he looks to figure into a very dominating bullpen which will include teammates Kenley Jansen and Brandon League.
The details and amounts of their contracts have not been released yet, but we will relay the contract numbers to you once they do. Arbitration eligibility gives the players their first opportunity for a seven figure MLB contract. A.J. Ellis and Ronald Belisario definitely deserve a pay bump after the way they each performed last season.