The Los Angeles Dodgers have signed right-handed pitcher Dustin McGowan, who joins Brandon McCarthy, Brett Anderson, Brandon Beachy, and others on the list of pitchers with checkered injury histories to join Los Angeles this off-season.
McGowan, who turns 33 on March 24, has spent time as both a starter and a reliever in his seven-year career, but 70 of his 78 appearances over the past two seasons have come in relief. According to Eric Stephen, Dodgers manager Don Mattingly views McGowan as a competitor for a bullpen spot.
ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick reports that McGowan’s deal is a Major League contract for the league minimum ($507,500), with a $1 million roster bonus if he makes the team and up to $1.5 million in incentives, for a max of just over $3 million.
McGowan has a history of shoulder injuries and a torn ACL, pitching in only five games from 2009 to 2012. He pitched in 53 games last season, and while his numbers were not eye-popping (4.17 ERA and 5.02 FIP), he was significantly better in his 45 relief appearances than in his eight starts, and he has stated that he is more comfortable as a reliever. His fastball as a reliever averages close to 96 MPH, while his average as a starter is just under 94, according to Brooks Baseball via Eric Stephen.
To make room for McGowan on the 40-man roster, the Dodgers put Beachy on the 60-day disabled list.