Lets put a hold on the pursuit of Brian Dozier and lets talk about Joe Blanton. The right-hander is the best reliever on the free-agent market as of Tuesday.
According to ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick, the interest in Blanton has been heating up due to the limited amount of relievers. So, there is a possibility of a return to the Chavez Ravine, however, there are many teams wanting to add Blanton to their team.
Interest in Joe Blanton is picking up now that several elite relievers have gone off the board. Return to #Dodgers a possibility.
— Jerry Crasnick (@jcrasnick) December 27, 2016
Possible teams that could sign Joe Blanton to fill their bullpen:
- Los Angeles Dodgers
- Seattle Mariners
- San Francisco Giants
You see the pattern? All teams are on the west coast because of Blanton’s residence in Napa Valley, so it would be a better fit for Blanton to stay on the west coast.
The 36-year-old posted a 7-2 record and 2.48 ERA with the Los Angeles Dodgers in the 2016 season. Blanton struck out 80 batters in 80 innings pitched for manager Dave Roberts. Blanton also held his opponents to a .194 average and a WHIP of 1.01 in 75 games.
Blanton had a below average performance in the National League Championship Series against the Chicago Cubs with a 21.00 ERA in three innings pitched.
His contract was worth $4 million for one-year last winter when he was acquired by the Dodgers, so the club is capable of re-signing Blanton to another one-year deal due to his age.
There are have been many questions about who will end up in the Dodgers bullpen and Blanton could now be a possibility. After re-signing Kenley Jansen, the Dodgers are looking forward to adding another arm to their roster. Or will the Dodgers stick with reliever like Grant Dayton, Chris Hatcher, Pedro Baez, and Adam Liberatore?