Dodgers Way Quick Hits: Corey Kluber, Bryce Harper, Trade
The Dodgers acquired some bullpen depth on Tuesday, Jan. 8 when they acquired right-handed pitcher Jaime Schultz from the Tampa Bay Rays for minor leaguer Caleb Sampen.
Schultz, 27, has made 22 major league appearances in his six professional seasons having been called up by the Rays for the first time in 2018. In his solo major league stint, Schultz went 2-2 with a 5.64 ERA with 35 strikeouts and 17 walks. He had a 74 ERA+.
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Outside of his major league playing time, Schultz has played in six minor league seasons where he has pitched a total of 136 seasons, 80 of which have been as the starting pitcher. In that frame, Schultz has accumulated 425.2 innings pitched with a 3.57 ERA and a 22-17 record. While those numbers are nothing special, the 27-year old newly acquired reliever has done an impressive job at retiring batters by way of strikeout having a career K9 rate of 11.7.
Overall the move is not a needle mover but, then again, not every move can be. The trade saw the Dodgers acquire a player who can be sent to Triple-A should he not perform and, in the event the Dodgers need a roster spot, Schultz can be DFA’d with little guilt at all.
The former Tampa Bay Ray turned Dodger does bring depth to the already deep pitching staff in Los Angeles and his strikeout ability is certain to have been a factor in the team’s decision to acquire him.
With the Dodgers stellar pitching coach staff between Triple-A and the Major Leagues, Schultz can easily learn to hone in his control and perhaps reinvent himself into a quality arm for the Los Angeles.
Schultz in 2018 averaged a heater that sat in the upper 95 mile per hour range and that too could have been an attractive feature for the Dodgers when they traded for him.
The Dodgers offseason is certainly far from over and the flurry of minor league moves should not be the ceiling for the rest of the offseason’s transactions. Both Bryce Harper and Corey Kluber’s markets are worth monitoring in the coming days as both could come off the shelf in the near future.