Heading into the 2014 season, the Los Angeles Dodgers had question marks at the backend of their starting rotation. Dan Haren was signed, which gave the Dodgers’ a fourth starter but the final spot remained largely up for grabs.
Stephen Fife was one of multiple pitchers that included Josh Beckett and Paul Maholm, who were under consideration to become the fifth starting pitcher. Fife appeared in just one game during Spring Training and was sent to Triple-A Albuquerque.
Fife started nine games for the Isotopes (11 total appearances) and finished with a 2-2 record to go with a 7.01 ERA.
During a May road trip in which the Dodgers were short on starters, Fife was promoted from Triple-A to make a spot start May 4 against the Miami Marlins. He gave up two runs in the first inning, then held the Marlins scoreless over the next three innings after the Dodgers tied the game in the second.
Fife gave up one run in the fifth and sixth innings and hit the only batter he faced in the seventh. He exited the game with the Dodgers trailing by one run and they suffered a walk-off loss.
Fife underwent Tommy John surgery in August, which puts him pitching next season in jeopardy. He was placed on waivers and accepted a Triple-A assignment Monday.
Should Fife manage to make a return in 2015, it more than likely will come with the team’s new Triple-A affiliate in Oklahoma City.