LOS ANGELES -- The Dodgers and first baseman James Loney reached agreement Friday on a one-year, $4.875 million contract to avoid salary arbitration. Loney had sought $5.25 million, and the Dodgers had offered $4.7 million with a hearing scheduled for Feb. 18. Loney was the last unsigned arbitration-eligible player for the club. Loney, who earned $3.1 million last year, received a sizable raise even though his power numbers are on the low end for his position. In 2010, his average and on-base percentage slid during a dramatic second-half slump, when he hit .211. Nonetheless, he received a larger salary than some players in his comparable class, including Kevin Kouzmanoff, Corey Hart and B.J. Upton.
Since the inception of salary arbitration 35 years ago, the Dodgers are 14-6 in cases decided by a hearing and 6-1 in their last seven cases, dating back to 1991. That includes the most recent wins over Joe Beimel in 2007 and Eric Gagne in '04 by assistant general manager Kim Ng, who is in charge of the club's cases. The last player to beat the Dodgers in a hearing was Terry Adams in 2001. The club's first arbitration case was in 1975, when Ron Cey was awarded a salary of $56,000 instead of the club's submission of $47,000.
Ken Gurnick is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.