Mets trade Seo, Hamulack to Dodgers for relievers

Updated: January 4, 2006, 5:28 PM ET
Associated Press

LOS ANGELES -- The Los Angeles Dodgers acquired right-hander Jae Seo and left-handed reliever Tim Hamulack from the New York Mets on Wednesday for right-handed relievers Duaner Sanchez and Steve Schmoll.

A 28-year-old South Korean, Seo made 14 starts for the Mets last season, going 8-2 with a 2.59 ERA and 16 walks and 59 strikeouts in 90 1-3 innings. He also was 7-4 with a 4.29 ERA in 19 starts for Triple-A Norfolk.

"Seo's going to get a chance to start," Dodgers general manager Ned Colletti said. "He had a real good year with the Mets and in Triple-A, pitched close to 200 innings. Seo is a no-frills guy who knows how to pitch."

Seo, who went 5-10 with a 4.90 ERA in 2004, has a 22-24 career record and 3.85 ERA in 66 starts and five relief appearances, all with the Mets.

"This gives us a little more depth in the starting rotation," Colletti said. "I don't think this will prohibit us from getting another starter in either free agency or in a trade. One more would be good. I think we have a rotation now that's capable of throwing 180 innings, 200, 210 through all five starters."

New York general manager Omar Minaya is seeking middle relievers after signing Billy Wagner to be the Mets' closer, and Sanchez will work alongside Aaron Heilman and Chad Bradford in the bullpen. It was unclear whether the Mets were still trying to acquire Danys Baez from Tampa Bay.

"I pursued other things, but this one was in front of me," Minaya said. "The others that were out there never came to fruition. I had to make a choice: either wait for something else or get something that we've liked all along."

Seo joins a Los Angeles rotation that includes right-hander Brett Tomko, who signed last month, and three returnees: right-handers Brad Penny and Derek Lowe, and left-hander Odalis Perez.

Jeff Weaver, a 14-game winner last season, is a free agent and has until Sunday to re-sign. Colletti said he's spoken with Scott Boras, Weaver's agent on several occasions but called Weaver's return a long shot.

Colletti said the 29-year-old Hamulack has a good chance to make the Dodgers' roster. Hamulack made his major league debut last year after 382 minor league appearances in 10 seasons, making six appearances and allowing six earned runs in 2 1/3 innings. He was a combined 5-3 with 12 saves in 49 games for Double-A Binghamton and Triple-A Norfolk.

The 26-year-old Sanchez was 4-7 with a 3.73 ERA and eight saves in 79 games last season, tying him for second in the NL in appearances, and he served as the Dodgers' closer late in the year. He was a setup man in 2004, going 3-1 with a 3.38 ERA in 67 games.

Sanchez made his big league debut in 2002 with Arizona. He also pitched for Pittsburgh in 2002-03 before the Dodgers claimed him on waivers after the 2003 season.

The 25-year-old Schmoll, signed by Los Angeles in May 2003, was 2-2 with a 5.01 ERA and three saves for the Dodgers and 0-3 with a 4.78 ERA in 22 games for Triple-A Las Vegas last season.

"It was tough to trade both of them," Colletti said. "Omar had a need in the bullpen. I felt I have a need in the rotation."


Copyright 2006 by The Associated Press