Scott Rolen leaning towards returning

Jeff Hanisch-US PRESSWIRE

Third baseman Scott Rolen is leaning towards playing in 2013.

Scott Rolen is leaning towards coming back for 2013, he tells John Fay at Cincinnati.com.

In the article Fay mentions how it may be difficult for Cincinnati to offer Rolen the $6.5 million that he made in 2012, but that the Dodgers are interested and may be the best-fit for the 37-year old third baseman.

Rolen played in 92 games last season, but hit .245/.318/.398.

The emergence of Todd Frazier for Cincinnati along with them being near the limit of their budget means that Rolen probably will not be a fit for them, but if Rolen comes back it would likely be for the Dodgers.

Rolen, who has played in his career for the Phillies, Cardinals, Blue Jays, and Reds, has amassed 2077 career hits and 316 career home runs. He won a World Series in 2006 with the Cardinals.

Cincinnati acquired Rolen in 2009 from the Toronto Blue Jays, surrendering Edwin Encarnacion in return for the veteran.

The article mentions that Rolen has been contacted by Dodgers manager Don Mattingly, but says that Rolen is not "an LA kind of guy."

The Reds are insisting that Frazier, who hit .273/.331/.498 last season in 465 plate appearances as a rookie. He is going to be 27-years old for the 2013 season, so he is a younger, cheaper, and possibly even better option for the Reds at third base.

Rolen has dealt with various injuries over the past few seasons, sustaining injuries to his back, shoulder, elbow, and head. He missed large chunks of time last season with back injuries and it is a legitimate concern as to whether or not he can sustain the wear-and-tear of a full Major League season anymore.

Baseball Prospectus' PECOTA projection system has Rolen projected for just under one WARP in 2013, but that is assuming he can get 330 plate appearances. Other serious concerns would revolve around his ability to play third base and stay healthy, but he would also need to play there to maintain his value.

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