--RHP Chad Billingsley signed a three-year contract extension March 29 for the 2012-14 seasons for a guaranteed $35 million. Billingsley avoided arbitration by agreeing to a $6.275 million contract for 2011. He will be paid $9 million in 2012, $11 million in 2013 and $12 million in 2014. The Dodgers hold a $14 million option for 2015 with a $3 million buyout. Billingsley can also block a trade to 10 teams.
--RHP Jonathan Broxton was charged with a blown save in his final appearance of the spring, his first at Dodger Stadium, in an exhibition game Monday. Broxton induced a double-play grounder that should have ended the game, but it got past second baseman Ivan De Jesus Jr. for an error. The home fans, who booed Broxton regularly in the second half last year, cheered his entrance, and only a few booed when the inning ended.
--SS Dee Gordon, who will likely start the year at Double-A Chattanooga, learned a valuable lesson in the middle of Jonathan Broxton's blown save in the exhibition game Monday. Gordon was covering second base on a hit-and-run single that went through the hole he vacated. Coaches later said Gordon should have remained in his position and had the second baseman cover because a slider was coming.
--LHP Clayton Kershaw, at 23 years and 12 days, will be the fifth-youngest Opening Day starter for the Dodgers since they moved to Los Angeles in 1958. He's the youngest since Fernando Valenzuela in 1983 and the first lefty since Valenzuela in 1988. This will be the fifth straight year the Dodgers have had a different Opening Day starter, which is the first time in 90 years the franchise has had five unique opening starters in five seasons.
--OF Tony Gwynn went 7-for-7 stealing bases this spring, and the Dodgers were 28-for-35 as a team. The Dodgers believe Davey Lopes is the best baserunning coach in baseball, so they hired him after a contract dispute with the Phillies made him available. The results were impressive early.
BY THE NUMBERS
.326 -- Career batting average with runners in scoring position for first baseman James Loney. That's the third-highest among active National League players who have at least 500 at-bats.
QUOTE TO NOTE
"My salary is increasing each year. I would say the likeliness of me being here beyond this year, it's not just my decision. ... I have been kind of lucky to be in one spot in baseball for as long as I have been, for six years now. That is a long time to be in one city playing for one team. There is no inclination now other than to go out and play this year and see what we've got. If I don't play well, we have seen them non-tender guys here. If you do play well, sometimes they don't offer those guys arbitration because their salaries are too high." -- Andre Ethier, on approaching this season as if it might be his last with the Dodgers. GM Ned Colletti said he spoke briefly with Ethier's agent during spring training, but the talks went nowhere. Ethier still has two years remaining before he's eligible for free agency, and Colletti isn't concerned about losing him.
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