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Teoscar Hernandez agrees with Dodgers

Dominican outfielder Teoscar Hernandez and the Dodgers have agreed to a one-year, $23.5 million deal, sources told MLB.com’s Juan Toribio. The club has yet to confirm the agreement.

Hernandez is a constant source of power, one of 12 players to hit at least 25 homers in each of the last four full seasons. That includes 26 homers he hit last year after being traded from Toronto to the Mariners in the offseason. However, for a player who was MVP and won the Silver Slugger Award in 2020 and 2021, his 2023 didn’t quite live up to expectations.

Hernandez had a wRC+ of 130 or better in each of his final three years with the Blue Jays, and a 105 wRC+ with the Mariners. His wOBA dropped for the third straight year, to .336, and his .741 OPS was his lowest since his debut with the Astros in 2016. Hernandez played just 100 at-bats in Houston before being traded to the Blue Jays at the 2017 deadline.

Plate discipline has never been Hernandez’s strong suit, and that was especially true last season. His swing rate on pitches outside the strike zone is the worst of his career at 35.2 percent. His walk rate was a career-low 5.6% and his strikeout rate was 31.1%. His 211 strikeouts and 35.8 percent strikeout rate ranked among the best among qualified players.

Hernandez frequently causes damage upon contact, as evidenced by his excellent 49.4% hard hit rate and 13.8% field goal percentage. The 31-year-old pitcher has certainly been punished when four-seam fastballs were thrown to him, and he has a .302 average, a .659 slugging percentage and a 72.4 percent slugging percentage.

He’s not an elite backstop, but Hernandez provides value in the outfield thanks to his strong arm in right field. His 12 assists last season were tied for third among all outfielders, and his 22 assists over the past two seasons were trailed only by the Nationals’ Ryan Thomas.

Hernandez’s most productive full season to date came in 2021, when he hit 32 homers, drove in 116 runs and slashed .296/.346/.524 with Toronto.

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