As expected for many weeks, The Dodgers have retained relief pitcher Mike MacDougal, also known as Dougie to us. This move has been expected for weeks now and it was made official today. According to reports, the deal is a major league contract worth 1 million total. Dougie will make 650,000 in 2012, and there is also an opti0n for 2013 worth about 2.35 million dollars. The 34 year old right hander also has a 350,000 buyout.
Robert Meiklejohn MacDougal also known as Dougie, was born in 1977, in Las Vegas, Nevada. Dougie went to Wake Forest University, and turned down going into the majors to finish his senior year. Eventually Dougie was drafted by the Royals in the first round of the 1999 amateur draft. Dougie was originally a starting pitcher, and has spent time with quite a few MLB teams. He has pitched for the Royals, White Sox, Nationals, Cardinals, and the Dodgers.
While Dougie has been blessed with great stuff, a good fastball clocked at 95-98 MPH, was once clocked at 103. Dougie adds a slider, curve and occasional change-up. Despite his great stuff, Dougie has struggled in the past with injuries, mechanical problems, and ineffectiveness. In late 2001 Dougie faced one of his biggest challenges. During a Carlos Beltran at-bat, Beltran lost control of his bat, and it hit Dougie in his head, fracturing his skull. Dougie lost feeling in his right arm because of the accident. As you know a pitcher losing feeling in his pitching arm is a frightening experience. Dougie persevered and recovered. In 2003 the Royals turned him into a closer, and Dougie saved 24 games and earned an all-star appearance.
After bouncing around the majors for a few years, last spring Dougie was given a spring training invite by the Dodgers. Due to injuries that besieged the bullpen, Dougie made the 25 man roster. Last year with the Dodgers Dougie pitched in 69 games. He was often asked to pitch above his pay grade while struggling with his control and allowing inherited runners to score. Dougie’s walk rate was 4.6 per nine, his ERA was 2.05, but his FIP was 3.96, suggesting that he pitched worse than the traditional stats show. Dougie walked 29 batters, while whiffing 41. He had a 3-1 record in 2011, and recorded one save. Dougie has an 18-23 career record, and a 3.94 ERA. Dougie has 71 saves, and a 7.4 SO/9 rate.
This shouldn’t cause too much concern. Although a lot of other Dodger blogs are complaining. We knew for a while that the Dodgers were bringing him back. I’m sure we can find plenty of other more important things to complain about. Not to say Dougie isn’t important, however we need to accept the fact that Dougie will be returning to the Dodger bullpen in 2012 so let’s move on. We should be more choosy about our complaints. Now if you want to complain about the Dodgers signing a bunch of overpriced mediocre vets blocking Jerry Sands from starting and causing the loss of Hiroki Kuroda, then that is a very valid complaint. Otherwise Dougie should perform adequately enough in middle relief. Let’s leave him alone.
Now if Donnie would just use him at the beginning of innings instead of with runners on base…..Well we shall worry about that when the season starts. Go Blue!