LOS ANGELES (AP) Dodgers outfielder Justin Ruggiano elected to become a free agent Friday rather than accept an outright assignment to the minor leagues.

The 33-year-old was sent outright to Triple-A Oklahoma City by the Dodgers, who needed to clear a roster spot. Ruggiano would have been eligible for salary arbitration if he had remained on the team's 40-man roster and been offered a contract by the Dec. 2 deadline.

He was acquired from Seattle on Aug. 31 and filled in for injured outfielder Yasiel Puig. Ruggiano batted .291 in 21 games with the Dodgers, going 0 for 4 with three strikeouts in the postseason.

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He earned $2,505,000 this season.