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#pounditSaturday, January 28, 2023

Ex-World Series champion lands contract from Dodgers

Jason Heyward looking on

Jun 18, 2017; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Chicago Cubs right fielder Jason Heyward (22) enters the dugout to play the Pittsburgh Pirates at PNC Park. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

After the Chicago Cubs signed former LA Dodgers outfielder Cody Bellinger this week, the Dodgers are countering by signing a former Cubs outfielder.

The Dodgers announced on Thursday that they have signed former All-Star Jason Heyward to a minor-league contract. Heyward will be getting an invite to Major League camp, the Dodgers add.

The 33-year-old Heyward had spent the last seven seasons with the Chicago Cubs. He was a two-time Gold Glove Award winner in the Windy City and also contributed to the Cubs’ World Series title in 2016. But Heyward was limited to 48 games last season thanks to injury (hitting just .204 overall), so he cannot be relied on for the same production any longer.

While Bellinger’s departure opens up some playing time in the outfield, that will likely be funneled to 23-year-old Miguel Vargas and 25-year-old Gavin Lux instead. Heyward, if he can get onto the Major League roster, probably projects as an emergency and/or late-season depth piece. That might not be the signing that Dodgers fans were hoping for. But the Dodgers have missed on several big free agents thus far and seem hesitant to pursue some of the ones who are still available.

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