Dodgers Rumors: Joe Blanton’s Return is a Possibility

Lets put a hold on the pursuit of Brian Dozier and lets talk about Joe Blanton. The right-hander is the best reliever on the free-agent market as of Tuesday.

According to ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick, the interest in Blanton has been heating up due to the limited amount of relievers. So, there is a possibility of a return to the Chavez Ravine, however, there are many teams wanting to add Blanton to their team.

Possible teams that could sign Joe Blanton to fill their bullpen:

  • Los Angeles Dodgers
  • Seattle Mariners
  • San Francisco Giants

You see the pattern? All teams are on the west coast because of Blanton’s residence in Napa Valley, so it would be a better fit for Blanton to stay on the west coast.

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The 36-year-old posted a 7-2 record and 2.48 ERA with the Los Angeles Dodgers in the 2016 season. Blanton struck out 80 batters in 80 innings pitched for manager Dave Roberts. Blanton also held his opponents to a .194 average and a WHIP of 1.01 in 75 games.

[graphiq id=”1aviD633E1″ title=”Joe Blanton 2016 Complete Pitching Splits” width=”600″ height=”793″ url=”https://w.graphiq.com/w/1aviD633E1″ link=”http://baseball-players.pointafter.com/l/1352/Joe-Blanton” link_text=”PointAfter | Graphiq” ]

Blanton had a below average performance in the National League Championship Series against the Chicago Cubs with a 21.00 ERA in three innings pitched.

His contract was worth $4 million for one-year last winter when he was acquired by the Dodgers, so the club is capable of re-signing Blanton to another one-year deal due to his age.

There are have been many questions about who will end up in the Dodgers bullpen and Blanton could now be a possibility. After re-signing Kenley Jansen, the Dodgers are looking forward to adding another arm to their roster. Or will the Dodgers stick with reliever like Grant Dayton, Chris Hatcher, Pedro Baez, and Adam Liberatore?

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  1. Liberatore, Dayton, Ravin and even Fields should be in line to replace Blanton. Let’s face it, Blanton is a relieve pitcher that can get you through the season but not a playoff type pitcher. Dodgers are better off in trying to develop someone now or trading for one that is established even though it would be painful to see him go to the Giants. Baez and Hatcher will also have their opportunities but both scare me every time they take the mound.

  2. Arodc03 I do not believe that any of the relievers that you have identified will replace Blanton. Those mentioned are ML relievers, but none of those pitchers are really capable of going multiple innings. IMO Stripling and Wood are the best possibilities to replace Blanton.  They are the two who will probably end up as the RH and LH relievers capable of going multiple innings.  i do not believe that either pitcher can be counted on pitching 6-7 innings as a starter, but both are very good once or twice through the lineup.  Blanton is a luxury that they should not have to pay for.

  3. You maybe be right, none of those guys work out, but the potential is there. The season is long and many will have an opportunity, including Stripling and Wood as you mention. I also think Urias could be in the mix because LAD will limit his innings.

  4. Oh please no.  I have a friend who is an Angel fan and we tease each other every season about the other signing Blanton remembering well all those fingers.  Please don’t let that nightmare continue.

  5. Arodc03 It’s time they stop babying Urias and let him go more than four or five innings.

  6. Dodgers55 Despite the fact he was the Dodgers second best reliever last season? I would trust him over the two slugs, Hatcher and Baez.

  7. Brad Machado Arodc03  I disagree with you on Urias.  He just 20 years old and has lots to mature both physically and mentally.  Furthermore, the Dodgers are stacked with veteran pitchers to get through the season, so there’s no need to rush him, although it sometimes feels like it.  Dodgers took their time with Kershaw and resisted the temptation of trading him and now they have the best pitcher in baseball.  Urias who was signed at a lot younger age then Kershaw should also be handled in the same manner because the potential of developing another great pitcher like Kershaw is certainly there.

  8. Arodc03 Urias is going into his 4th year as a pro. If they are so worried about him then by all means hold onto DeLeon and let him have one of the slots.

  9. 100% agree. I trust Blanton a lot more than those two clowns. I’m over Baez. He seems to give up a bomb every time out.

  10. Urias is still yet to complete 1 full season in at the ML level.  If you measure how long it takes for a pitcher to come into his own a the ML level by looking no further than our own Clayton Kershaw, it took Kershaw 4 full seasons to win 15 games, Urias has some years ahead of him before we start seeing him dominate fully in the Dodger rotation.  Don’t get me wrong, Urias will be in the rotation at some point, but will be limited.  DeLeon will get some starts too but will have to compete with Kazmir, McCarthy, Stripling, Stewart, Frias and at some point maybe even Ryu.

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