During Farhan Zaidi’s press conference discussing the Brandon McCarthy signing, the Dodgers designated Brian Wilson for assignment to make room for McCarthy on the 40-man roster.
This is certainly a move some have, for lack of a better term, fantasized about but thought it was a pipe dream of sorts. Then we remember this isn’t Ned Colletti’s front office anymore.
“This was not a move made out of any medical concern,” Zaidi said during his telephone presser. “This is a move about performance.”
How refreshing. I had thought the Dodgers might jettison Wilson before the start of the season because it looks like he probably won’t ever be the guy he was pre-Tommy John, and I’m glad this new regime thought similarly — and pulled the trigger.
Zaidi said he isn’t worried about the contract, as there’s not much the team can do about it. The Dodgers now have 10 days to trade or release Wilson, or he accepts an assignment to the minors (not happening). He also said the team has had preliminary discussions about trading Wilson to other teams, but nothing is imminent.
Wilson struggled to the tune of a 4.66 ERA, 4.29 FIP and a 4.25 xFIP — all of which are terrible. With the additions of Joel Peralta, Juan Nicasio and Chris Hatcher, there was a surplus of right-handed relief pitching options. Zaidi said Wilson wasn’t one of the seven best reliever options the Dodgers had, so the move made sense.
I’m sure there’s a team out there that will take a flyer on Wilson, especially since he’ll either make peanuts in a new contract (if he’s claimed), with the Dodgers paying the vast majority of the $9 million owed to him in 2015.
Zaidi also had some nice things to say about new Dodger Brandon McCarthy.
The first thing asked of him was about McCarthy’s health, but he satisfied with it. He mentioned McCarthy changed his offseason training routine to focus on the upper body, thus strengthening his shoulder and allowing him to become a more durable pitcher. He also views McCarthy as a long-term rotation solution in the event Zack Greinke opts out after next season.
The Diamondbacks discouraged McCarthy from throwing his cut-fastball while in Arizona. It is an organizational philosophy. Some orgs don’t like guys to throw sliders. To each their own. But, this is the most encouraging quote regarding McCarthy.
“I would vote for the pitch mix he pitched better with,” Zaidi said.
Yes! Let the guy throw what makes him most successful. Don’t let a silly philosophy get in the way of success. And this is coming from a guy (me) who doesn’t like the cutter all that much (sup, Chad Billingsley?).
Zaidi also praised McCarthy from their time together in Oakland.
“(There was) no starting pitcher I felt more comfortable with out on the mound,” he said.
McCarthy won’t have to … shoulder (sorry) … that kind of load in Los Angeles, but it’s nice that the general manager of the team has that much confidence in a guy who’s projected to be the team’s fourth starter.
Zaidi wouldn’t touch on the reported Brett Anderson signing, but he does like how the rotation is shaping up.
“We feel very good about where we are having five starting pitchers who give us a chance to win every time out,” he said.
We’ll see what happens, but this front office — even after trading (almost) Matt Kemp — is awesome. I still don’t like that Kemp will eventually be in San Diego, but every other move has been money thus far.