Friday, June 28, 2013

League Relegated To Less Stressful Situations

The Dodgers said yesterday that, coming off of his last disastrous appearance (and perhaps Don Mattingly's epiphany on bullpen selections), Brandon League will only be used in low-leverage, low-stress situations:

"We're going to try to get him back and start piecing him back together," Mattingly said Wednesday. "We're going to put him in some situations that are a little less stressful. He was our closer at the beginning of the year. We know he's got the stuff."

Pitching coach Rick Honeycutt and bullpen coach Chuck Crim watched video with League on Wednesday afternoon, trying to diagnose the source of the right-hander's troubles.

"Mechanically, they're showing him some things that he was able to do last year that is not the same this year," Mattingly said. "Hopefully, he can put some positive outings together and get some confidence back."

"Piece him back together?" Well, after suffering through League's 30 appearances and NL-leading 4 blown saves (to be fair, he shares that blown save lead with Ronald Belisario, not to mention Jeremy Affeldt of the Giants as well as two Diamondback pitchers), it's clear that League doesn't have the right stuff. League's K/9 ratio of 4.1 is worse than any other year save his rookie year (and less than half of his ratio last year, when he snagged the 3-year, $22.5M deal from Ned Colletti).

I'm not hopeful League can get his head screwed on straight given low-stress performances; maybe a stint in the minors makes more sense? In any event, however, I'm glad Mattingly, who in May said he was sticking behind League, only to change his mind and say League is out as closer, only to bring him back Tuesday for another white-knuckle save situation. Donnie may change his mind again tomorrow, but at least for now, we're on the right path.

4 comments:

Dusty Baker said...

I think Mattingly is simply following Nomo's handy graph.

Dusty Baker said...

It's like, hell yeh we've won six in a row. But then it's like, but we're still six games under .500. Damn were we ever in a hole. Here's hoping my return doesn't break the streak.

Spank said...

Go back to Boston FOOL!

Orel said...

Sparky!