The Dodgers took a flyer on Brandon Beachy last year, and it didn’t really work out. He elected for free agency, but on Wednesday, the Dodgers are set to re-sign the veteran right-hander. He’ll make $1.5 million with $2.75 million in incentives.
Depth is the name of the game. If it were the object of the game, the Dodgers would be the unquestioned champions. With Kenta Maeda‘s deal still not official amid concerns about his elbow (it’s still likely to get done), Beachy gives the Dodgers more options.
Perhaps another offseason of work could get him closer to the pitcher he was in Atlanta. He pitched just eight innings in the majors last year, and they weren’t good: 10 hits, seven runs, six walks. He threw 113 innings with Oklahoma City and pitched to a 3.64 ERA, 4.64 FIP, 18.3 K% and 10.7 BB%. Not good, but not horrific, either.
If Beachy can be a viable starting option, then good. If not, he’s an easy cut in spring training. There is nothing wrong with gambling $1.5 million on a starting pitcher who was good in hopes that he’ll regain his old form. Beachy’s velocity was, predictably, down last year (scouting reports don’t differ much from the eight innings of pitch data in the majors), so it’ll be interesting to see if another year could produce better results.
Mike wrote about Beachy’s signing last year.
“Immediately, you can see the Dodger strategy here. Brandon McCarthy is an injury risk. Brett Anderson is an injury risk. Kershaw and Hyun-jin Ryu both spent time on the DL last year. We talked about Zack Greinke‘s elbow like an hour ago. Joe Wieland, Zach Lee, Carlos Frias and friends are decent but unexciting depth. I don’t want to bite an article I’d already planned on writing this week, but you don’t sign back-end starters needing to get 200 innings out of them. You sign them hoping to get as many good innings as you can while having the next guy ready to go.”
Let’s see: McCarthy an injury risk? Check. Anderson an injury risk? Check (but was healthy in 2015). Kershaw DL? No. Ryu DL? Big check. Now just replace Greinke with Maeda and it’s basically the same thing (oh, and Mike Bolsinger and Scott Kazmir exist). The only thing that’s different is the depth after Frias, Lee and Wieland is more exciting (in the form of Jharel Cotton and Jose De Leon).
This is a good signing for depth. If the Dodgers get any positive contribution out of Beachy, it’ll be a big win. If they have to cut him in spring training, it’s no big deal.