The superstar pitcher who was going to be added to give the Dodgers that fantastic rotation? Guess you can forget about it. Such a nice little dream. And a seemingly reasonable one, given the Dodgers’ vast riches.
Only apparently there will be no superstar-level pitcher coming to the Dodgers this off-season. No new superstar coming anywhere on the team.
Stan Conte alert: That should finish the Dodgers rotation, complete with duct tape, bailing wire and crossed fingers. The Dodgers had previously agreed to terms with right-hander Brandon McCarthy on a four-year, $48-million contract.
Now if you go way out there on a limb and assume good health, that’s a really good rotation. Not as good as if Hamels or Scherzer had dropped in, but really good.
The problem is assuming arms and elbows stay attached and functional. McCarthy has been on the disabled list seven times in his nine-year career with shoulder problems. Until last season, he had never thrown 200 innings.
Anderson has been on the DL seven times and he’s 26. Last season he threw only 43 1/3 innings for the Rockies, sidelined by surgeries for a fractured index finger and then a bulging disk in his back.
So if you found yourself wistful that this new Dodgers management team would come in and make at least one big splash by adding an elite player, sorry. The lineup is set, the rotation is set and probably so is the bullpen.
Probably not what you were expecting or hoping for. The lineup will be very good, the rotation potentially superb, the defense much improved. But without a big-time addition. No sexy newcomer. Nothing to grab a headline and excite the masses.
Of course, the Dodgers have a waiting list for season tickets and led the majors in attendance again last season, so it’s not like they need an incoming Hamels to generate interest. They can get by with this for now.
They still might not be done. One thing we’ve learned during the short reign of Andrew Friedman, don’t rule anything out. That rotation is pretty fragile – Kershaw, Greinke and Ryu were all sidelined by injury last season – so some kind of swing man may yet be coming. Certainly, there’s no way he’s going to count on this starting five being healthy all season.
But it doesn’t appear it will be a Scherzer. Not someone to get the heart racing. The Dodgers subtracted superstars Hanley Ramirez and Kemp. And then added some very good, or potentially good, parts and new depth.
I know, you just sort of sigh. Apparently dreams of spending big were left to a time past.