Following the Dodgers and Exploring The Team’s Past
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Kevin Goldstein released his list of the top eleven Dodgers prospects and it’s an interesting one. First off, there’s no five star guys and only one four star prospect. The good news is, you have a boat load of three star guys and while there’s not a lot of star talent, there’s plenty of guys who could pan out and play a supporting role on a good team.
Zach Lee is the top guy and he’ s the four star. The problem with him, like a lot of other Dodgers prospects, is that they’re several years away. Lee had a solid season at Low-A and he’ll be tested at High-A in 2012. Still, it’ll be fun watching this first round draft pick and he moves up the ladder.
Nathan Eovaldi is one of the guys who’s closest to making his big league impact and he’s number two on the list. He pitched for the Dodgers in 2011 and he had a nice showing at Double-A but he may be the odd man out with all of the arms the Dodgers signed in the offseason.
Another pitcher, Allen Webster, is third. He’s probably a year away but he’s a good minor league season away from pitching for the Dodgers. Left hander Chris Reed and righthander Garrett Gould round out out the top five.
The Dodgers signed two of their arbitration eligible players but Clayton Kershaw is the big elephant in the room. Kershaw is asking for $10 million after his Cy Young season while the Dodgers are looking for $6.5 million. This isn’t going to end well for the Dodgers so my guess is they settle pretty soon. I just hope they get a deal done before Kershaw gets too annoyed.
Andre Ethier and James Loney both signed. Etheir signed a $10.95 million deal while Ethier will make $6.375. For a team that has an owner that’s on the financial ropes, the team seems to be throwing a lot of money around. At least these are only one year deals though although I’d like to see them lock up Kershaw next year to a longer team deal. I’m hoping that’s the first priority of the new owner.
Mike MacDougal was one of the bigger surprises for the Dodgers in 2011. He came back from a rough 2010 season and threw 57 innings with 41 strikeouts and a 2.05 ERA. He had a nice season in 2008 in his final year with the White Sox but 2009 and 2010 were rough campaigns.
It’s only for $1 million so there’s not a lot of risk and if he has another nice season, there’s a 2013 option. The Dodgers have quite a few bullpen options but this signing gives the Dodgers some extra depth at a low cost.
The Dodgers signed right handed starter Aaron Harang to a two year, $12 million deal. Harang found new life with the San Diego Padres last year after a rough finish to his time in Cincinnati. Still, Petco Park is a pitchers haven so it’ll be interesting to see how much of his success was a solid comeback and how much was the pitchers park.
Harang gets $3 million in 2012, $7 million in 2013 and then there’s a vesting option for 2014 if he throws at least 360 innings over the two seasons. Harang was 14-7 last year with a 3.64 ERA but it was his first good season since way back in 2007. To put it into perspective his 3.64 ERA was just a 98 ERA+ because that adjusts for park factors so he was about an average pitcher. Fortunately Chavez Ravine is more of a pitchers park as well, just not in Petco’s league.
The Dodgers filled a hole in their rotation by signing left handed starter Chris Capuano to a two year, $10 million deal. He had a rough season for the Mets last year where he went 11-12 with a 4.55 ERA. His best season is six years away when he went 18-12 with the Brewers back in 2005.
Capuano did have some decent rates though. He struck out 8.1 per nine innings and walked just 2.6. His batting average against was .270 though and right handed hitters belted him hard with an .818 OPS against. He also seemed to run out of gas because his second half was a little rougher then his first. He did have a gem of a game on August 26 though. He struck out 13 and gave up just two hits against the Braves in his first shutout since 2006.
I think Kemp got robbed. He finished second in the MVP voted behind Ryan Braun. This was clearly a case of Braun getting more recognition because his team was better. Kemp got 10 first place votes, sixteen second place votes and six third place votes. This compared to Braun’s 20 first place votes and 12 second place votes. Prince Fielder came in third and he got one first place vote and Justin Upton came in fourth and he also had a first place vote.
Clayton Kershaw came in twelfth in the voting. He got as high as a fifth place vote and he was named on eleven ballots. No other Dodger received a vote, which wasn’t too surprising for the mediocre season the team had.
Kemp got his payday too. Now we just have to hope he can carry all of this over to next year. Heck, for the next decade. You’d hope this does wonders for Dodgers tickets sales too. You figure with the Dodgers locking up Kemp, that’s worth a piece of those tickets by themselves.
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