After giving onlookers only a few minutes to speculate that a trade of Dodgers reliever Caleb Ferguson, conspicuously absent from DodgerFest activities this past weekend, could've been a roster-clearing move for the team to accommodate another bullpen arm, insider Jon Heyman, who also broke the Ferguson trade news, offered an explanation.
Ferguson will head to the Yankees, freeing up one spot on the 40-man roster with two Yankees prospects heading to LA. To fill the spot on the 40-man, Ryan Brasier, a fixer-upper-turned-star, will return to LA on a two-year, $9 million deal after a stellar half season with the Dodgers in 2023.
Dodgers re-sign Ryan Brasier in a no-brainer move after trading Caleb Ferguson
Brasier's story with the Dodgers is a tale as old as time at this point. He was released from the Red Sox organization in May 2023 and quickly signed a minor-league contract with the Dodgers, who clearly saw something salvageable in him. They were right; he made only two appearances in Triple-A before being promoted to the major league team in June, where he stayed to pitch 38 2/3 innings and log a 0.70 ERA.
He became a free agent when the season ended and the Dodgers were quiet about a the possibility of a return, but given his performance with the team during the second half, getting him back in LA was a logical decision. He's had his ups and downs through the majors since 2013, but his work with the Dodgers was inarguably the best of his career.
He'll join a Dodgers bullpen that's already stacked with the likes of Evan Phillips, Brusdar Graterol, and Joe Kelly, and will presumably continue to get high-leverage opportunities. Hopefully, Brasier will be able to pick up right where he left off.