Thursday, May 3, 2012

Did the Dodgers do the right thing in letting MacDougal go?

To answer the headline: hell yes! He was awful this season and, unsurprisingly, Ned Colletti was fooled by Mike MacDougal's sparkly 2011 ERA.

MacDougal signed a 1-year contract this winter and got a guaranteed $1 million ($650,000 base salary, $350,000 buyout). And what did the Dodgers get out of it? Not much: 7.94 ERA, 2.65 WHIP, 14.3 H/9, 9.5 BB/9.

But giving Ronald Belisario, a guy who hasn't pitched in the majors since 2010 (and did so poorly), the roster spot was the wrong move.

Belisario, who's been through a lot in the last year, had trouble throwing well in his minor-league rehab appearances: 4 2/3 IP, 8 H, 6 R (four earned), 2 BB, 1 K.

Those numbers don't exactly instill a lot of confidence. However, Belisario is out of options and, as Eric Stephen of True Blue L.A. notes (in the link above), since he has already been outrighted once in his career, Belisario would have to approve any minor-league assignment.

Belisario 29, is known for his low-to-mid-90s sinker and could be a big boost to the Dodgers' bullpen -- if he can somehow regain his 2009 form (2.04 ERA, 1.15 WHIP, 3.51 FIP). But I'm not holding my breath.

In this scenario, I'd have rather the Dodgers promoted Shawn Tolleson, who has been flat-out dominant in the minors ever since being drafted in the 30th round of the 2010 MLB Draft. This season is no exception: 0.90 ERA, 0.90 WHIP, 5.4 H/9, 2.7 BB/9, 16.2 K/9, 6.00 K/BB. He has a career 1.00 ERA in the minors (that isn't a typo).

We know the Dodgers are hesitant send legitimate pitching prospects to Triple-A, so the next logical step for Tolleson is the majors.

He's not on the 40-man roster and with just one spot open (and the likely signing of Bobby Abreu), the Dodgers would have to make a move. In this case, I would have just 86'd Belisario and gone straight to Tolleson.

The Dodgers' desire to give Belisario another shot is understandable. Despite a turbulent year-plus, he arrived at camp a month early and was committed to getting back on the mound.

We'll see what happens. I'm not optimistic, but the Dodgers do need another legitimate pitcher to back up Josh Lindblom, Kenley Jansen and Javy Guerra. If it's Belisario, that'd be great. If not, hopefully someone else steps up.

At least we don't have to see MacDougal struggle to throw strikes for the Dodgers anymore.


Speaking of Abreu, there's no official word of his signing yet. Those must me some really "serious" talks he and the Dodgers are having.


Here's an excerpt of my latest post over at Chad Moriyama:
"Tony Delmonico, 2008 sixth-round pick, was released. The 25-year-old was hitting just .188 with the Quakes in 21 games.

He was drafted out of Florida State, converted to catcher, and had a great debut season in the Pioneer League: .340/.443/.716. The catching experiment didn’t work, despite a decent caught stealing percentage for a guy who never caught before (28 percent). However, 33 passed balls in 102 games is where the experiment ended."


"Jonathan Garcia, last year’s April monster with Great Lakes, now finds himself on the Ogden Raptors roster. There’s no word on whether he’s injured or not, but his performance with Rancho was definitely sub-par.

In 15 games, Garcia posted a .228/.250/.263 line with 22 strikeouts in 57 at-bats, and that simply isn’t going to get it done for the 20-year-old. After hitting 19 home runs in the Midwest League as a 19-year-old last season, he had just two extra-base hits for the Quakes (two doubles)."

Photo credit: terren in Virginia, Flickr

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