2. Phil Bickford
After an impressive 2021 season in which he finished with a 2.50 ERA, 1.03 WHIP and 59 strikeouts in 56 games (50.1 innings) with the Dodgers, Phil Bickford was eaten up by the Regression Monster and has been good for a 4.85 ERA, 4.17 FIP, 1.17 WHIP and 55 strikeouts in 53 games (52 innings) this year.
Though he’s spent most of the season with the big-league club, he was recently optioned at the end of August in favor of Jake Reed and Heath Hembree (yup, that’s how bad it’s gotten!) before being recalled because Tony Gonsolin and Brusdar Graterol hit the IL. Don’t look now, but he’s now tossed nine scoreless outings in his last 11 appearances, including four straight!
However, Bickford runs out of minor-league options once the 2022 season expires, which will make him a lot less valuable to the Dodgers. Being able to stash him at Triple-A was likely a paramount reason he remained with the team throughout this year.
Unless there’s a wild September turnaround for Bickford, expect Andrew Friedman to work on elevating his once coveted spot in the bullpen.