Dodgers reliever JP Howell exercises $6.25 million option to return in 2016

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LOS ANGELES — Reliever J.P. Howell has exercised his $6.25 million player option for 2016 and will remain with the Los Angeles Dodgers.

The 32-year-old left-hander earned $4 million each of the last two years as part of a contract agreed to in December 2013 that included a $3 million signing bonus.

Howell, who left Tampa Bay to join the Dodgers, went 6-1 with a 1.43 ERA this season.

The team confirmed Howell's decision Thursday. If he had declined the option, he would have become a free agent.

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