The one that got away

It’s hard to blame the Dodgers for letting Joel Hanrahan get away. Although he was long one of their top pitching prospects, the key word there is “long.” He was in the organization for seven seasons, spending at least parts of three of them in Triple-A, and yet he was never quite able to make the jump to the majors. He also seemed to backslide in 2005, the year after he spent the entire season at Las Vegas and went 7-7 with a decent-for-the-PCL 5.05 ERA. But he backslid in 2005, started the season in high Single-A after coming back from an injury, then never got above Double-A the rest of the year. He split 2006 between Jacksonville and Las Vegas, but no one could blame him when he left after that season for minor-league free agency, something he had earned the right to do after accruing so much time in the minors. When the Nationals signed him to a major-league contract two winters ago — he still began the season in Triple-A — no one could have imagined that he would eventually become their closer. It was even more difficult to imagine that he would post saves on back-to-back nights against his old club. But as critical as I have been of Nats GM Jim Bowden — see my previous post — you have to give Jimbo credit for finding this one. And you have to give Hanrahan credit for establishing a niche, and a foothold, in the majors after all those years in the minors with the Dodgers.

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  • Dave R.

    Let’s not get carried away here. Hanrahan could be nothing more than a flash in the pan. He walks too many and really has the closer job by default.

  • Denton True

    I was thinking about Hanrahan too.

    He was part of that 2000 draft which was horrible. Only 4 players drafted by the Dodgers that year ever made it to the majors. Their first rounder, Ben Diggins, was traded to Milwaukee for Tyler Houston (remember that guy?) and only pitched in 24 games for the Brewers. Catcher Koyie Hill (4th round) played for the Dodgers very briefly and went to AZ in the Steve Finley deal. I’m not sure if he’s even still playing. A guy that was taken 37th named Victor Diaz was traded to the Mets for Jeromy Burnitz (another on the long list of guys who seemed to beat up on the Dodgers when he played against them but stunk while he played for them).

    What a complete waste of a draft. It’s no wonder Ed Creech was blown out after another really, really bad draft in 2001 (shortly after Malone melted down) and was replaced by Logan White.

    Of the 50 players selected by the Dodgers in 2000, they combined to log a grand total of 3 games for LA (all from Hill). An argument could be made for the fact that one was traded to bring in Finley, who will forever stay in Dodger lore due to one grand slam, but overall, a pathetic draft.

  • Brooklyn Dodger


    Agreed. I’m a lot more concerned with loss of Jon Meloan and especially Carlos Santana in the two month Casey Blake rental. That deal has the potential to come back and haunt the Dodgers. I was opposed to it when it happened, and it looks worse everyday.

  • Brooklyn Dodger

    Sorry Denton,

    Should have led off my previous post with “Dave/Denton”, not just “Dave”. Agree with both of you.