The Dodgers have apparently made their first free agent acquisition of the offseason, signing 31-year-old swing man Tom Koehler to a one-year contract pending a physical.
Chris Cotillo of SB Nation’s MLB Daily Dish was first to report the news early Friday evening.
Koehler hit the free agent market when the Blue Jays did not tender him a contract at the deadline in early December. Before last season’s waiver deadline in mid-August, the Marlins traded Koehler to Toronto for pitching prospect Osman Gutierrez and cash. Between the Fish and the Jays combined, the Bronx native made 27 appearances—13 of which were starts—and threw to the tune of a 6.69 ERA with a 6.05 FIP over 72-2/3 innings of work.
In 2016, he posted a 9-13 record with a 4.33 ERA and 147 punchouts after logging 176-2/3 innings over 33 starts, but his most productive year in the bigs was probably 2014, when he registered a 10-10 record with a 3.81 ERA and a 3.84 FIP with 153 strikeouts over 32 starts and 191-1/3 innings.
Koehler was originally selected by the Marlins in the 18th round of the 2008 draft out of Stony Brook University in New York, perhaps most notable for their strong rugby program.
It’s not immediately known how the Dodgers plan to use the 6-foot-3 right-hander, but Koehler definitely brings versatility to the table, having the ability to pitch in any level of relief, as well as making an occasional spot start if needed. He can throw hard in spurts, as Eric Stephen of True Blue LA noted his heater jumped a few ticks when he transitioned to the bullpen in Toronto. As a reliever, he also increased the usage rate of his curve by more than 10 percent.
Cotillo reported that Koehler’s numbers as a reliever last season—3.00 ERA in 12 innings—were much better than as a starter—7.42 ERA in 60-2/3 innings—and that the Dodgers were one of at least six different teams who have recently showed interest in the righty.
Once the Dodgers make the deal official after the physical, the club will need to vacate a spot on the already full 40-man roster, to make room for Koehler.
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2 thoughts on “Dodgers Reportedly Sign Tom Koehler”
Come on Hunnicutt, start working your magic. Blanton/ Morrow 3.0
Well, the Dodger just cleared 3 spaces on the 40-man by getting rid of Agon, McCarthy, Kazmir and Culberson and taking back Kemp. Quite the deal. I think it’s a win-win. No wonder they were happy to see Anthopolous go to Atlanta.