Kenta Maeda had a solid debut season for Los Angeles. He’s hoping his sophomore campaign is even better.
Maeda’s goal is to throw 200 innings, according to Bill Plunkett of the Orange County Register. He averaged that number across an average of 28 starts in Japan, albeit under different circumstances.
Kenta Maeda said his goal this season is to pitch 200 innings, working to add strength/stamina in off season #Dodgers
— Bill Plunkett (@billplunkettocr) January 28, 2017
Kenta Maeda said he has worked this winter to gain strength with a goal of 200 IP.
— Ken Gurnick (@kengurnick) January 28, 2017
Maeda’s wallet would be one beneficiary to him reaching that goal. The 28-year-old receives $250,000 for each 10-inning increment reached after 90 innings. He earns a $750,000 reward for hitting 200.
After winning collecting 16 wins over 32 starts and tossing 175.2 innings, 200 is a reasonable expectation for Maeda. He made quick adjustments to American play, but faded as the workload increased. Maeda struggled in the playoffs, pitching to a 6.75 ERA over 10.2 innings in three starts.
With his subpar play down the stretch, the Dodgers could monitor his innings in 2017. The organization has a surplus of starters and could afford to skip a few of Maeda’s starts later in the summer (though his agent wouldn’t be fond of it). But Maeda has been working to improve his stamina. We’ll see if that pays dividends.
In the end, the goal is to win the World Series. Keeping Maeda fresh is paramount to the Dodgers’ postseason success. Regardless of however many innings he throws in the regular season, he’ll be remembered for his playoff performances.