With news that Brian Wilson was headed to the disabled list due to nerve irritation in his elbow, it created an opportunity in the crowded bullpen for another reliever to help fill the void. Reliever and former Cleveland Indians closer Chris Perez seems to be the natural fit, but he may need to share that responsibility with Jose Dominguez.
Dominguez was part of the 30-man travel roster the Dodgers were able to utilize for Australia, but was then optioned to the minor leagues one day prior to the Dodgers opening their U.S. schedule in San Diego. According to Ken Gurnick of Dodgers.com, Dominguez was recalled Wednesday afternoon:
Jose Dominguez recalled.
— Ken Gurnick (@kengurnick) April 2, 2014
The young right-hander pitched 8.1 innings in nine games with the Dodgers last season, posting a 2.16 ERA. He’s a power arm, similar to Kenley Jansen, but can struggle with his control. Dominguez appeared in the second game of the Opening Series with the Arizona Diamdonabcks, struggled and allowed two runs in just 0.1 of an inning. Along with his brief stint at the major league level, Dominguez split his time with the Dodgers’ Double-A and Triple-A affiliates. He went 2-0 with five saves and 40 strikeouts in a combined 22 game appearances across both leagues.
If Dominguez can locate his pitches he can serve as a valuable asset out of the bullpen in Wilson’s absence. His velocity often times allows him to overpower batters, which may be useful given the Dodgers recent late-inning struggles. However, Dominguez still needs to develop his secondary pitches, which makes locating his pitches imperative to any success.
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