With Blake Treinen signed for 2020, the Dodgers still can afford to add depth to the back end of the bullpen. Will Dellin Betances be their next addition?
Even though the Dodgers already had Kelly and Jansen, Jorge Castillo of the LA Times tweeted that the team was interested in adding Betances and Treinen a few days ago.
Treinen joins Joe Kelly and Kenley Jansen at the back end of the Dodgers bullpen, creating a formidable trio that could conceivably cover the seventh, eighth, and ninth innings of a postseason game. Having three potentially solid relievers is a great start and is something the Dodgers have not had maybe even since the days of Brandon League or Brian Wilson, but Kelly, Jansen, and Treinen all come with question marks.
Now that the team already signed Treinen, will they still add Betances? Joel Sherman has reported that the Dodgers are the most aggressive suitor for Betances.
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Based on our Twitter poll of 318 fans, 91% feel the Dodgers should not feel content with just adding Treinen to the mix, and based on the recent performances of the current trio, I’d certainly agree.
Jansen dealt with injuries and with his performance in general for much of last season, Joe Kelly had one of the worst April’s in recent memory for LA, and Treinen had an ERA that approached 5.00 last season despite finishing his 2018 campaign with a sub-1.00 ERA. Even with all of the success that the fringe relievers for the Dodgers have had at times in the regular season, and with the young arms of Dustin May and Julio Urias supplementing the bullpen at times, the Dodgers still could use another option for the last few innings of the game, or even just as a high-leverage stopper for the third time through the opposing lineup’s top of the order.
Enter Betances. He’s got the imposing figure like Treinen and Jansen, as he stands at 6’8” and 265 pounds. He also has the same sort of fastball as all three of the aforementioned Dodgers relievers, with a heater that, in his last full season in 2018, averaged 97.7 mph, which was good for 11th best amongst pitchers who threw 250+ pitches that season, according to Baseball Savant.
If the Dodgers can add Betances and still go out and snag a starting pitcher via free agency and a bat via trade, they should go ahead and get it done. There are simply no other relievers on the market with the game-changing potential Betances possesses when healthy, except maybe for Treinen. Betances is likely to cost right around $10 million just like Treinen, though injury questions surround Betances that could depress his value slightly in comparison to the former-A’s closer.
With a solid bullpen, the need to resign Hyun-Jin Ryu or Madison Bumgarner lessens, and Betances will only require a one-year ‘prove-it’ contract. He fits the Dodgers plans perfectly, and he should be the next signing the Dodgers make this offseason.