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12/11/08 3:29 PM EST

Dodgers facing non-tender decisions

Saito among several players who are candidates for contracts

LAS VEGAS -- The Dodgers face a handful of non-tender decisions by Friday night's deadline, with the focus on closer Takashi Saito.

Saito is arbitration eligible, but only if the Dodgers tender him a contract. And even though he's the highest-rated reliever in the National League over the past two years, the club might effectively release Saito, who missed two months with an elbow injury.

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"We're still trying to figure something out on that," said general manager Ned Colletti.

Through arbitration, Saito could earn around $3.5 million after receiving $2 million in 2008. The Dodgers are trying to get him signed for around $2.5 million and avoid arbitration and are using the leverage of the non-tender in an attempt to get an agreement before the deadline.

Other possible Dodgers candidates for non-tenders are Yhency Brazoban, Scott Proctor, Jason Repko and Angel Berroa.

Berroa's case is unique, in that he is coming off a multi-year deal in which Kansas City paid him $4.75 million last year. Rules prevent a team from cutting a salary by more than 20 percent, so the Dodgers would have an arbitration submittal number of at least $3.8 million, more than they'd want to pay Berroa.

Because of that, Berroa is likely to be non-tendered. Colletti speculated that Berroa won't sign and would become a free agent.

"Just because you don't tender doesn't mean you can't sign him later," he said. "He'll probably shop and see [what's available]."

Ken Gurnick is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.