The Dodgers made a number of connected minor-league moves on Thursday -- all involving good relief prospects.
Shawn Tolleson was promoted from Double-A Chattanooga to Triple-A Albuquerque. The Dodgers tend to not send their good pitching prospects to the launching pad that is the Pacific Coast League, but relievers are at less "risk" of being knocked around rather than a starting pitcher.
Tolleson, 24, had a 1.38 ERA, 0.92 WHIP, 13.1 K/9 (up from 11.2 with Chattanooga last season) and a ridiculous 5.5 H/9 rate. He was flat-out dominating Southern League hitters and has been dominant his entire career (1.06 ERA, 0.94 WHIP, 13.3 K/9). The move to Triple-A is a good one in my eyes. Josh Wall will likely still get the ball in the ninth (and he's been good), but Tolleson will help to form a great 1-2 punch. Plus, he's one step closer to being in the Dodgers' bullpen, which is a really good thing.
In the resulting move, the Dodgers promoted Logan Bawcom to Chattanooga from High-A Rancho Cucamonga. The 23-year-old Bawcom, underrated by many who look at prospects (in my eyes), posted a 0.64 ERA (gave up his first run of the season on Tuesday), 0.71 WHIP, 15.4 K/9, a .087 batting average against and an even-more-ridiculous-than-Tolleson 2.6 H/9.
It's nice to see the Dodgers being a little aggressive with these guys. Of all the prospects out there, right-handed relievers tend to move quickest. It'll be interesting to see how Bawcom fares against advanced competition. Steve Ames figures to get the ball late in the game, and much like the Wall-Tolleson duo in Triple-A, Ames and Bawcom figure to be a formidable duo for the Lookouts.
To take Bawcom's spot, the Dodgers promoted Eric Eadington from Low-A Great Lakes. Eadington, Baseball America's No. 31 Dodger prospect, was throwing well for the Loons before his promotion: 3.06 ERA, 0.96 WHIP, 13.8 K/9 and a 27.00 K/BB ratio. That's not a typo; Eadington has struck out 27 batters and walked just one. Even in Low-A, that's rather eye-opening.
Eadington, 24, will also help fill the role of left-handed reliever as the Quakes' Jordan Roberts went on the disabled list this week. Roberts has a 1.00 ERA and 1.44 WHIP in 18 innings. He's not great (20 hits allowed, six walks, eight strikeouts), but he was decent for the Quakes.
Scott McGough has already taken over closing duties for the Quakes. Eadington had been splitting time with Yimi Garcia in Midland as the Loons' closer, so he can be a fall-back option if McGough struggles.
The guy who has the most to gain is Bawcom. He can prove he belongs in the same company as Tolleson -- his numbers are better this year, albeit against inferior competition. Plus, it'd give the Dodgers yet another right-handed reliever to turn to down the road.
We'll see if these guys adapt to their new environments well. I'm not too concerned.
Look for the newest episode of "Dugout Blues," the podcast I do with LA Dugout's Jared Massey. It should go live sometime today.