LOS ANGELES -- Hanley Ramirez won't have to change positions. Juan Uribe is returning to the Los Angeles Dodgers.
But retaining Uribe will come at a considerable cost to the Dodgers.
The team has agreed to a two-year deal with the third baseman, according to a person familiar with the situation who spoke under the condition of anonymity because the contract isn't finalized.
The Dodgers didn't want to offer the 34-year-old Uribe a multiyear deal, considering how their previous one turned out. Uribe batted a combined .199 in the first two years of his recently completed three-year, $21 million contract.
But the Dodgers gave in to Uribe's demands, as they saw no other viable options in a thin free-agent market for third baseman.
The Dodgers are hoping the Uribe who returns to them will be one who batted .278 with 12 home runs and 50 runs batted in this year. Uribe's bounce-back 2013 season was capped by a two-run home run against Atlanta in a division series that sent to the Dodgers to the National League Championship Series.
Even if Uribe regresses offensively, the Dodgers figure he'll give them a solid defender and positive clubhouse influence.
Failure to re-sign Uribe could have resulted in a move for Ramirez from shortstop to third base, which would have forced the Dodgers to find a new shortstop -- no easy task.
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