Grading the Dodgers: Bullpen
By Alex Campos
Mandatory Credit: Anthony Gruppuso-USA TODAY Sports
J.P. Howell– B-
Howell also had a really strange season. Again, reliever ERA is misleading, but his was 1.43 (3.34 FIP). It’s especially misleading with Howell, as he’s primarily used as a LOOGY and despite appearing in 65 games, only threw 44 innings. He only threw a full inning or more in 29 of his 65 appearances and only got one out in 21 of his appearances.
Howell fared very well against left-handed batters, allowing 26 of the 95 to reach base and not allowing an extra base hit all season to them. Against righties, Howell gave up 28 hits, including three homers and walked seven of the 95 righties he faced. Howell only pitched an inning in the postseason and gave up a hit.
By pitching in 65 games this year, Howell now has a player option for next year rather than a team option. If he exercises it, he will be back for $6.25 million next year, but he very well could choose to test free agency and get more money elsewhere. He’s not quite a dominant reliever, but he’s a very good LOOGY and if Zach Duke can get $5 million/year, Howell probably deserves more than $6.
Next: Pedro Baez