There is a time when enough is enough and right now, it is time for the Los Angeles Dodgers to cut reliever Brandon League. Once an all-star, League’s time with the boys in blue has been a roller coaster and with the surplus of relievers, League has fallen to the bottom of the list.
Brandon League’s highlight of his career was when he made the American League All-Star team in 2011 with the Seattle Mariners. League had 37 saves and a 2.79 era. After losing his closer job due to numerous blown saves, League was traded to the Dodgers on July 30th, 2012 for two minor leaguers. He became the closer in September after Kenley Jansen was put on the disabled list because of an irregular heartbeat. League actually pitched pretty well in his 28 appearances with the Dodgers. He converted all six of his save opportunities and didn’t allow a home run in 27.1 innings. The Dodgers rewarded League for his efforts by re-signing him to a three-year, $22.5 million dollar contract. (WHY NED, WHY NED!) Even at that time, Kenley Jansen had established himself as a top-10 closer so why did the Dodgers re-sign League for so much money!
Before the 2013 even started, I was not happy with manager Don Mattingly’s decision to make League the closer. Every time he came in to close, I couldn’t watch. It was a disaster and finally on June 11th, League was demoted after blowing his 4th save in 17 opportunities. Since June 11th, Jansen has become one of the top closers in the game while League has continued to struggle. League finished the 2013 season with a 5.30 era in 54.1 innings.
So why keep League? In his three appearances this spring, League has struggled and looks as if he has little confidence in himself. He has given up five runs in his three appearances and was pulled yesterday after giving up a two-run home run. Relievers Jose Dominguez, Javy Guerra, Chris Perez, and Seth Rosin have combined to throw 21.2 scoreless innings. Seth Rosin has been one of the biggest surprises in camp and should make the team over League.
I cant see a reason why the Dodgers would keep League except for the fact that they would owe him a lot of money. Even having him start the season in the minors would be better (if his contract allows him to go to the minors). We are at the end of the chapter, it is time to close the door on Brandon League.