The Dodgers bullpen was an effective unit in 2021. Collectively, the group ranked 2nd in team ERA in in MLB last season. Hard-throwing righty Blake Treinen was a big reason the LA bullpen was elite in 2021.
Baseball experts have taken notice. ESPN’s Buster Olney ranked Treinen as the fourth-best reliever in all of baseball.
“With his hard-veering sinker and nasty slider, Treinen keeps the ball off the barrel of the bat. No relief pitcher generated a higher rate of soft contact last season than the right-hander.”
To Olney’s point, Treinen had the fourth-lowest hard-hit percentage (24.3%) of relievers who pitched at least 70 innings according to FanGraphs. He also ranked eighth in strikeout rate (29.7%) and sixth in ground-ball rate (52.6%).
Those stats built a foundation for a very successful 2021 campaign for Treinen. He finished the year with an impeccable 1.99 ERA and an outstanding 0.98 WHIP in 72 games pitched. His highest total since 2017.
The Dodgers re-signed Treinen last January to a three-year $24M deal that includes a $8M team option for 2023.
Treinen is another reliever that the Dodgers took a flyer on and panned out. The 33-year-old was released by the Oakland A’s after he failed to meet expectations in 2019. He was an All-Star and legitimate Cy Young candidate the year prior.
His 2018 stats were mind-boggling.
Blake Treinen 2018 Stats
- ERA: 0.78 (1st among RP with min. 70 IP)
- WHIP: 0.83 (3rd)
- K%: 31.7% (7th)
- BB%: 6.7% (7th)
- SV: 38 (2nd)
2019 was most unkind to Treinen. His ERA ballooned to 4.91 along with his WHIP (1.61). The Kansas native did not record a save after June 17th. He also struggled with his control (5.68 BB/9) before a September back injury ended his season prematurely.
Oakland lost all confidence in their former shutdown closer and cut him loose after his down year.
The Dodgers saw an opportunity to pickup a potential high caliber bullpen an pounced.
Treinen will continue to be a crucial high-leverage arm for the Dodgers this coming season.
He’s one of the best in the business.