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Dodgers re-sign Brandon League to three-year, $22.5M deal

Oct 30, 2012, 8:28 PM EDT

league getty Getty Images

The Dodgers acquired reliever Brandon League from the Mariners at the July 31 trade deadline and were pleased with the numbers (2.30 ERA and 1.13 WHIP in 27 1/3 innings) he posted down the stretch. So they’ve decided to keep him around for a while.

According to Dylan Hernandez of the Los Angeles Times, the impending free agent was re-signed on Tuesday evening to a new three-year contract. The financial details of which are not yet available.

Any three-year deal for a reliever deserves to be met with raised eyebrows, but League boasts a 3.14 ERA (and 122 ERA+) since the start of the 2010 campaign. And the Dodgers have enough financial backing now to spend somewhat recklessly.

The 29-year-old righty will presumably serve in a setup role in 2013 behind closer Kenley Jansen.


UPDATE, 8:50 PM: Jim Bowden of ESPN and SiriusXM reports that the three-year deal is worth north of $7.1 million per season and Hernandez adds that the Dodgers are viewing League as their closer. Lordy.

UPDATE, 9:02 PM: Tim Dierkes of MLB Trade Rumors says the contract is actually worth $7.5 million per year and that it also includes a vesting option. What in the world is Ned Colletti doing?

UPDATE, 9:05 PM: Hernandez confirms: it’s a three-year, $22.5 million contract for League.

  1. skerney - Oct 30, 2012 at 8:54 PM

    Ned gonna Ned.

  2. Bryz - Oct 30, 2012 at 9:00 PM

    How did I know that this would be a bad contract? Was it the 3 years given to a reliever? Was it the fact that this reliever has closing experience? Or perhaps was it that this is the Dodgers and they’ve got money to burn spend?

    • aarondommin - Oct 31, 2012 at 10:55 AM

      The 2 year 13 million the Dbacks are giving to Heath Bell is looking A LOT more savvy after this deal.

  3. chill1184 - Oct 30, 2012 at 9:11 PM

    Omar Minaya approves of this deal

  4. randygnyc - Oct 30, 2012 at 9:26 PM

    Funds drunk. Any old fool can spend money. The Dodgers haven’t made a shrewd move since the new owners took over.

    • marinersnate - Oct 30, 2012 at 11:36 PM

      “Funds drunk. Any old fool can spend money.”

      Your favorite team would know.

  5. js20011041 - Oct 30, 2012 at 10:17 PM

    I have a question for Dodgers fans. What’s scarier? The Hillside Strangler or Ned Colletti with a limitless supply of money?

    • koufaxmitzvah - Oct 30, 2012 at 10:51 PM

      The Night Stalker was scary. Dude crept through windows, and drew pentagrams all over the kitchen and living room with your blood.

  6. blabidibla - Oct 30, 2012 at 11:07 PM

    Ned Colletti says they’re viewing him as their closer over Kenley Jansen

    • yahmule - Oct 31, 2012 at 3:02 AM

      I knew this would happen. I’ll bet Mattingly lets him blow more saves than Wedge did before making him a middle man.

    • js20011041 - Oct 31, 2012 at 8:20 AM

      But look at the bright side. Considering the way that managers use their closers, Jansen is likely to be pitching more high leverage innings than League. I’d rather have my best reliever pitching in the 8th inning with a one run lead against the heart of the opposing team’s lineup rather than the 9th with a three run lead.

  7. Carl Hancock - Oct 30, 2012 at 11:16 PM

    How long until the Dodgers are bankrupt and sold again? I don’t care who the owners are, they are string up the franchise for failure with deals like this.

  8. bears615 - Oct 31, 2012 at 12:14 AM


  9. crisisjunky - Oct 31, 2012 at 1:56 AM

    Criminy, not one obligatory smirk regarding Dodgers needing to get “League” approval?
    not even a Mona Lisa smile?

  10. shackdelrio - Oct 31, 2012 at 11:35 AM

    Wow, that’s a huge number for a mediocre pitcher. As a Rays fan, I always looked forward to seeing League when he was in Toronto. Also as a Rays fan, I have seen that you can build a bullpen with young prospects and cheap veterans and it can be effective.

  11. goawaydog - Oct 31, 2012 at 12:47 PM

    Giants fans approve this deal.

  12. denny65 - Oct 31, 2012 at 12:57 PM

    Wow. Just, wow. League wouldn’t have gotten anywhere near $22.5/3 had he remained in Seattle.

    Well, there was absolutely no chance he was going to remain with the Mariners after his “let’s blow this one, too!” fest in June/July, so there’s that. The Ms now have a (successful) closer who was out of baseball and tending bar a little over a year ago, so that in itself puts the Dodger’s profligate ways in perspective.

  13. jkaflagg - Oct 31, 2012 at 2:14 PM

    Would imagine that Kenley Jansen will close if healthy; but that’s a big if, and the Dodgers now have the resources to buy an expensive insurance policy like Brandon League in case he is not. Also remember that the Dodgers cleaned out most of their upper-level pitching prospects at the trading deadline, so signing a reasonably reliable veteran pitcher was a good move. As far as the money…..well, great for Brandon League and great for other free agents looking for big deals; not so great for other GMs who will have to overpay mediocre players to keep them away from the Dodgers.

    And down the road, not so good for Dodger fans who will see their cable bills skyrocket to cover the big TV deal that makes deals like this possible.

  14. jrbdmb - Nov 1, 2012 at 7:02 PM

    Not clear yet if the Dodgers are trying to be the next Yankees, or the next Mets. I guess we’ll find out soon enough.

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