The Los Angeles Dodgers will pay Brian Wilson $9,500,000 in 2015. Wilson will not pitch for the Dodgers.
Wilson struck out 10.1 batters per nine innings in 2014. Beyond that, it wasn’t a successful season. The Dodgers, who inked Wilson to a two-year, $19.5 million deal after a lights-out month and a half at the end of the 2013 season, badly needed quality relief pitching last season. Wilson’s ERA jumped from 0.66 in 18 appearances in 2013 to 4.66 in 2014.
It was clear that two Tommy John surgeries had taken their toll by the end of last season.
Via Brooks Baseball:
Two things that’ll catch your eye. First, the shrinking velocity numbers throughout 2014 (he didn’t even throw a fastball in his lone playoff appearance). Second, Wilson dabbled with a knuckleball. And if you think Wilson is going to just quietly fade away with several million dollars stashed away in his nasty, rubber-banded beard, you don’t know Wilson’s personality. He’s not just an attention-seeker supreme, he’s also a survivor.
While Wilson is essentially holding the knuckleball in reserve, it’s not far from his mind.
“That’s a pitch that I’m just letting the league know that in case one day they’re interested in a starter, I can throw a knuckleball,” he said. “Not to be funny or as a joke – it’s a real pitch. Yeah, I wouldn’t mind starting one day, try that routine out at the professional level. I did it in the minors – I mean, it’s similar, not to the stakes of Major League competition.
“A knuckleball does nothing to your arm, so I could do it tomorrow — provided everything works out. You still have to get outs – it’s not like, ‘Oh, he throws a knuckleball, he’s going to play for 10 years.’ That’s still got to be a competitive pitch.”
For those wondering if Wilson could find his way back to San Francisco … just take a look at the photo above. We’ll see Melky Cabrera (who signed with the White Sox over the weekend) in a Giants uniform again before that would ever happen.