Dodgers acquire RHP J.P. Feyereisen from Rays for LHP Jeff Belge

As the Dodgers’ quiet offseason continues, they did manage to swing a trade. They are set to acquire right-handed reliever J.P. Feyereisen from the Rays for minor-league left-handed reliever Jeff Belge. It isn’t Carlos Rodon, but it’s something. I guess? But seriously, this is a move for the future bullpen rather than 2023.


Feyereisen, 30 in February, was designated for assignment by the Rays after the signed Zach Eflin. Now, what is a team like the Rays doing DFA’ing a guy who didn’t allow an earned run in 24 1/3 innings in 2022? Well, he underwent shoulder surgery last Thursday to repair his rotator cuff and labrum, so he wasn’t going to pitch much in 2023 anyway. And knowing how crucial shoulder procedures can be, it wouldn’t be at all surprising if he were out until 2024.

In 89 2/3 career MLB innings, he has a 2.31 ERA, 3.89 FIP and an 11.8 K-BB%. His control took a big step forward in 2022, as he reduce his walk rate from 13.5% and 14.1% in 2020 and ’21 to just 5.8% last season. It remains to be seen if it’s sustainable, but it’s an encouraging step. His SwStr% was 16.3% last season, the same as Daniel Hudson, whom is probably the odds-on favorite to be the Dodgers’ closer in 2023. He has the ability to miss bats, which is what the Dodgers look for in their bullpen arms.

Feyereisen is fastball-slider-changeup guy. Here’s how frequently he threw each pitch last season:

  • FB: 44.5%
  • SL: 29.1%
  • CH: 28.5%

His slider is almost exclusviely used against right-handed hitters, but his changeup was nearly 1:1 in terms of usage to each-handed hitter last season. In 2021, it was a 68/32 split to lefties and righties (respectively), but the fact he was closer to 1:1 in his brief time in 2022 makes me giddy because I love same-handed changeup usage.

Something to note about his fastball: In 2021, it got some good vertical movement. It was 3.9 inches better than league-average. His changeup was the same. We know the Dodgers like pitchers (especially relievers) who can pitch up in the strike zone with their fastball, so that tracks. He averaged 92.2 MPH on it last season, but it we’ll have to see if the velocity (and spin rate) comes back post-shoulder surgery.

Feyereisen’s slider has good average spin — 2,769 for his career — and the fact that he has only thrown it 28.2% of the time in his career could mean there’s a bump in usage coming, especially since it has delievered solid results in limited usage:

  • .208/.274/.338, .270 wOBA against, 86 MPH exit velo

And his slider got more horizontal movement in ’22 than it ever has.

Again, small sample size, but something to note going forward. It wouldn’t be at all surprising to see the Dodgers turn Feyereisen into Evan Phillips v2.0, even if their profiles aren’t an exact mirror image of one another.

He’ll head to the 60-day injured list once Spring Training begins, freeing up a 40-man roster spot. Once the move is official, the Dodgers’ 40-man roster will be at 38 players.


Heading to the Rays is Belge, 25, who was the Dodgers’ 18th-round selection in the 2019 MLB Draft. He has shown the ability to get strikeouts in the minors (33.5 K%), but he has also struggled with control (15.3 BB%). We know the Rays are good at developing pitchers, especially those in their mid-20s into their late-20s, so it wouldn’t be surprising to see him get to the majors one day. The Dodgers aren’t flush with quality left-handed relievers in the minors, but this isn’t a big loss for a guy who could help at the MLB level for the next three seasons (after ’23).


All in all, a good trade for the Dodgers, even if Feyereisen doesn’t ever make it all the way back. It’s a good gamble for the future bullpen.

About Dustin Nosler

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Dustin Nosler began writing about the Dodgers in July 2009 at his blog, Feelin' Kinda Blue. He co-hosted a weekly podcast with Jared Massey called Dugout Blues. He was a contributor/editor at The Hardball Times and True Blue LA. He graduated from California State University, Sacramento, with his bachelor’s degree in journalism and a minor in digital media. While at CSUS, he worked for the student-run newspaper The State Hornet for three years, culminating with a 1-year term as editor-in-chief. He resides in Stockton, Calif.