NEW YORK -- Still feeling the burn of another postseason disappointment and with management yet to confirm the return of manager Don Mattingly, the Dodgers' roster focus quickly shifts to free agency and the possible loss of Cy Young candidate Zack Greinke.
Greinke signed a six-year, $147 million contract in December 2012, but included was a clause that allowed him to be a free agent again after the 2015 season, just in case he did something remarkable that would increase his value.
Sure enough, he has, and opting out (he has a three-day window after the World Series ends) is essentially a formality. He will void the remaining three years and $71 million for a market likely worth five years and $150 million. When he chose the Dodgers three years ago, he chose the highest offer and said so.
Greinke, coming off his finest season, will be 32 next week, and it's uncertain whether the Dodgers will commit that much for that long to a player that will be that old in the out years of the deal.
Greinke has often said he's enjoyed his time with the Dodgers, but wouldn't talk contract with the media all season and held to that even when the season ended Thursday night.
When asked if he hoped to be a Dodger next year, Greinke said: "Yeah, that would be nice." Asked a followup question about essentially being in control of that, he said: "All right, see you guys."
Greinke is the Dodgers' biggest pending free agent, but not the only one. Also on the list is starting pitcher Brett Anderson and infielders Howie Kendrick and Jimmy Rollins. For a club to receive Draft-pick compensation when losing a free agent, the organization must first extend a one-year qualifying offer of approximately $15.8 million that the player can accept. Players the Dodgers would likely consider making such an offer to are Greinke (if he opts out), Anderson and Kendrick, the latter two having said that they would like to return to the club.
Another solid season for reliever J.P. Howell triggered a player option for $6.5 million that might provide him the leverage to work out a multiyear deal somewhere, and the club has options on infielder Chase Utley, reliever Joel Peralta and injured pitcher Bronson Arroyo, the latter having never pitched for L.A.
Conceivably, the Dodgers could retain none of them. The new front office has turned roster churn into a high art form, as only 11 players from last year's postseason roster were on this year's postseason roster.
The Dodgers also have 11 players eligible for salary arbitration, a list headed by closer Kenley Jansen, who would be a prime target for a multiyear deal in most organizations.
Ellis' value, reinforced with a solid second-half rebound, is further bolstered by the uncertain health of Grandal, who said he might have surgery on Wednesday to repair undetermined damage in his left (non-throwing) shoulder.
Ken Gurnick is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.