Dodgers trade for Indians' Blake

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Blake, who's batting .289 with 11 home runs and 58 RBIs, will upgrade L.A. at third base. He has been hot in recent weeks after languishing in the low .200s earlier in the year and was sought by multiple teams as an outfielder, including the Mets and Rays.

"Casey Blake is a gamer," Dodgers general manager Ned Colletti told The Associated Press. "His experience and character will be a plus as we head down the stretch in the final two months of the regular season."

Right-handed pitching prospect Jon Meloan and catching prospect Carlos Santana will go to Cleveland for Blake, 34, a 10-year major league veteran who is eligible for free agency following this season.

The trade, which is still awaiting approval from the commissioner's office, is the second major deal this month for the Indians, who earlier dealt ace CC Sabathia to the Brewers for minor league prospects.

Santana is hitting .323 with 14 home runs and 96 RBIs at Class-A Inland Empire (Calif.). Meloan, a converted reliever, is 5-10 with a 4.97 ERA at Triple-A Las Vegas. Santana is a big prospect but is blocked by the Dodgers' young catching star, Russ Martin

The Dodgers have been an offensive disappointment this year but are locked in a tight battle with the first-place Diamondbacks in the NL West.

Assuming the deal is completed, the Mets may turn to Seattle's Raul Ibanez to solve their need in the outfield. The Mets had been hoping for a right-handed hitter but are running out of options.

Blake brings experience and versatility to the Dodgers. He's played right field, first base and third for the disappointing Indians, who signed him as a minor league free agent in 2002. He struggled at the plate with runners in scoring position last year, batting just .190. Blake was often a target of Indians fans, who never seemed to appreciate his all-around value.

This season, Blake was one of Cleveland's most reliable players. He signed a $6.1 million contract at the start of the season, and the Iowa native has said he would like to finish his career with the Indians.