As many consider bullpen reinforcements a top need for the Dodgers, they are among the teams showing interest in free agent reliever Blake Treinen, according to Jorge Castillo.
The Dodgers have expressed interest in Blake Treinen, per source. Treinen was arguably the best reliever in baseball in 2018 before struggling in 2019. The A’s non-tendered him earlier this week.
— Jorge Castillo (@jorgecastillo) December 5, 2019
Treinen, 31, was non-tendered by the Oakland Athletics after a poor 2019 where he pitched to a 4.91 ERA and 5.14 FIP in 58 2/3 innings. He also dealt with multiple injuries, including a shoulder strain and a season-ending back injury. He was projected to make $7.8 million in arbitration.
However, in 2018, Treinen was the best reliever in baseball, posting a microscopic 0.78 ERA and 1.82 FIP in 80 1/3 innings, while striking out 11.20 per nine and walking only 2.35 per nine. He also finished sixth in the Cy Young Award voting that season.
In his career, Treinen is the owner of a 2.97 ERA, 3.36 FIP, 8.80 K/9 and 3.58 BB/9.
He will likely be looking for a 1-year deal in an effort to rebuild his value with the hope of signing a larger, multi-year deal the next season. The Dodgers would be smart to try and sign him on a high-incentives deal, buy-low deal.
Adding the 2018 All-Star to the backend of the bullpen with Kenley Jansen offers manager Dave Roberts another viable arm with closing experience. Additionally, mixing Treinen in with Joe Kelly and Pedro Baez as a bridge to Kenley could border on elite, if things fall the right way.
Signing Treinen would come with some risk, but the potential upside might be too much to pass on.