“Probably a few years ago I probably never would consider that,” Capuano told host Jorge Jarrin, “but coming back from injury – my second Tommy John (surgery) in 2010 with the Brewers – I had a chance to spend a couple months in the bullpen with Trevor Hoffman, who was in his last year in Milwaukee. That was when I kind of learned I could do it, I could kind of switch gears if I needed to.”
Capuano has made 189 starts and 25 appearances out of the bullpen in his career with mostly good results. With eight rotation candidates under contract if all are healthy, there’s no room for Capuano in the rotation. There isn’t much room in the Dodger ‘pen either, but the 34-year-old could give the team a reliable multi-inning option and spot starter that doesn’t really exist among the current collection of closers, former closers, and set-up men. If Capuano likes that role, the Dodgers should consider giving it to him.
Besides, it sure beats listening to trade rumors.
“I’m getting asked this by my family a lot,” Capuano told Jarrin. “Like my dad will call me up; my brother will call me up, ‘did you read the latest rumor?’ … In the off-season, I try to avoid going online as much as I can. I still hear the rumors and everything else. I try to put my head down and prepare for the season the same way. I had a great experience with the Dodgers last year and looking forward to being part of a winner this year. But I know it’s a numbers game and they may not have room for everybody.”
Onto the links …
• Felix Hernandez is reportedly on the verge of signing a seven-year, $175 million contract extension to remain a Seattle Mariner. The total value would be the largest ever for a pitcher, while the $25 million average annual value eclipses that of Zack Greinke ($24.5M) – and sets a precedent for Clayton Kershaw, who can become a free agent in 2015. He might be able to use Hernandez’s contract as a way to top $200 million.
• In National League West news, Todd Helton was charged with driving under the influence after drinking and driving … to buy lottery tickets, according to police in Thornton, Colorado. (It’s never good when your NL West news comes courtesy of TMZ).
• In more NL West news, the Giants retained closer Sergio Romo with a two-year, $9 million contract. Romo had filed for arbitration.
• An unnamed NL executive describes the Dodgers to ESPN’s Jayson Stark: “there’s also the potential for a lot of dysfunctional [sic] there.”
• It sounds like Paul White of USA Today tacitly agrees.
• I’ve personally laid eyes on exactly one baseball card from before 1870. Like this one, which sold for $92,000 yesterday, it was also a group photo.
• Hanley Ramirez: 1-for-4 yesterday, 4-for-24 in the Caribbean Series, playing for the championship tonight against Mexico (6 p.m., ESPN Deportes). He and his Leones del Escogido teammates also committed a delay of game penalty yesterday against Navegantes de Magallanes, but were not penalized in a 4-2 win.
• Which is the best defensive team of the last decade?
• I’m pretty sure Toro Y Moi means “smooth minimalist production,” but I’ve been mistranslating a lot of Spanish lately: