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Tuesday, May 24, 2022

Dodgers Reject Reliever Joe Kelly’s $12 Million Option

LOS ANGELES – It was a $25 million pout.

The Dodgers on Saturday officially declined the club option in the contract of reliever Joe Kelly, agreeing to pay him $4 million in 2022 instead of a $12 million salary.

Kelly became the Dodgers’ 12th free agent this winter along with Corey Seeger, Chris Taylor, Max Schaezer, Albert Pujols, Clayton Kershaw, Corey Nebel, Danny Duffy, Cole Hamels, Jimmy Nelson, Steven Souza Jr., and Kenley Jensen.

A member of the 2018 Boston Red Sox team that defeated the Dodgers in the World Series, Kelly signed a three-year, $25 million contract with the Dodgers over the winter as a free agent.

Kelly’s three seasons as the Dodgers were most notable for Carlos Correa’s brushback in Houston during the 2020 season—and the pouty face he punctured—and the mariachi jacket he wore to the White House with the team this season.

Kelly, 33, never became a reliable piece of the bullpen when the Dodgers had hoped to sign him. A season plagued by more than three injuries – including a shoulder surgery – Kelly was 7-4 last fall, with three saves, a 3.59 ERA, 1.23 WHIPs and 121 strikeouts in 105 1/3 innings.

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