Dodgers add Dustin McGowan to bullpen on one-year deal. Updates w/contract details.

Dustin McGowan

Dustin McGowan, 32, has a 25-27 record and a 4.57 ERA over parts of seven major-league seasons with the Toronto Blue Jays. (Getty Images)

GLENDALE, Ariz. — The Dodgers signed veteran right-hander Dustin McGowan to a one-year contract Monday, throwing another power arm into their unsettled bullpen hierarchy. McGowan’s profile is similar to that of new teammate Juan Nicasio: A right-hander who began 2014 as a starter, converted to the bullpen, and saw his fastball velocity jump at least 2 mph after making the switch. While pitch speed doesn’t always correlate with effectiveness, McGowan clearly benefited from the switch. He had a 5.08 earned-run average in eight starts with the Toronto Blue Jays then posted a 3.35 ERA as a reliever, often working multiple-inning situations. “I think starting is in the past,” he said. “I gave it a shot last year for one more time. For me, after going through all the surgeries, I was just having a hard time recovering. The first few starts weren’t too bad. I could recover a day or two in. But after the fifth or sixth, it started to get pushed another day or two in. By the last start, it was pitch and recover all the way up until the next start. Just sat down with the staff there and talked and decided let’s just not push it anymore.” McGowan’s shoulder has been a recurring area of concern, but not since 2013. Prior to that season he had three procedures on the shoulder. He underwent Tommy John surgery on his right elbow in 2004. Now, McGowan said he’s healthy and ready to contribute in whatever role the Dodgers have in mind. “Physically, I’m not 24 anymore but I can still get it up there,” he said. Dodgers manager Don Mattingly characterized the bullpen as a wide-open competition. Joel Peralta, Chris Hatcher, Adam Liberatore and Nicasio join holdovers Brandon League, J.P. Howell, Pedro Baez and Paco Rodriguez at the forefront of a race for seven spots. With closer Kenley Jansen sidelined for up to the first month of the season because of foot surgery, non-roster invitee David Aardsma could be an attractive option because of his closing experience. “I don’t know if we have a pecking order, honestly,” he said. “We have a lot of new faces that we need to get to know, guys that we have six weeks at this point to be able to evaluate and see.” To make room for McGowan on the 40-man roster, the Dodgers placed pitcher Brandon Beachy on the 60-day disabled list. Beachy, who underwent Tommy John surgery last year, signed a one-year contract Sunday and was expected to miss at least the first two months of the season anyway. McGowan will wear number 27 — Matt Kemp’s old number. The pitcher said he was not given a choice of uniforms. He’ll make the major league minimum salary ($507,500) plus a $1 million bonus if he makes the major-league roster. McGowan cannot be optioned to the minors.

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About J.P. Hoornstra

J.P. Hoornstra covers the Dodgers, Angels and Major League Baseball for the Orange County Register, Los Angeles Daily News, Long Beach Press-Telegram, Torrance Daily Breeze, San Gabriel Valley Tribune, Pasadena Star-News, San Bernardino Sun, Inland Valley Daily Bulletin, Whittier Daily News and Redlands Daily Facts. Before taking the beat in 2012, J.P. covered the NHL for four years. UCLA gave him a degree once upon a time; when he graduated on schedule, he missed getting Arnold Schwarzenegger's autograph on his diploma by five months.