Dodgers Pursuing Erasmo Ramirez

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Credit: James Borchuck/Tampa Bay Times

After the Rays game concluded today, rumors came out about how the Dodgers are interested in acquiring Erasmo Ramirez’s services. Well, this will be a tough player for the Dodgers to acquire, as Erasmo is a vital part of the Rays on and off the field, whether it is with his personality that makes everyone smile, versatility on being able to pitch in the rotation or bullpen or the fact that he has been the bullpen’s second best reliever.

In addition, the Dodgers want Erasmo as a stop gap starter to fill the void left with all the injuries that their rotation have dealt with this season. Once, one starter comes back, the Dodgers will most likely use the 26-year-old pitcher as a long reliever or middle reliever.

Interestingly, if the Dodgers get the Nicaraguan, he will most likely make more of an impact in the bullpen. The Dodgers bullpen has the second best bullpen ERA (3.06) in the majors behind the Kansas City Royals, so that means they have the top bullpen in the National League. Also, the Dodgers can afford to extend Erasmo, which I think the Rays should do. Erasmo has three years of team control left with the next three seasons being his arbitration years. That is what will drive the price high for him.

Now, Ramirez has pitched himself into a 3.68 ERA from the pen, but has one start this year. He finished last season with a 3.75 ERA and a 11-6 record in 163.1 innings (27 starts out of 34 games). He was actually one of the Rays most consistent pitcher in the rotation last season and this year in the bullpen. The right-handed pitcher has picked up a 7-6 record in 51.1 innings of work. He has punched out 38 batters in 32 games and finishing five of them. He is trusted and called on a lot by Manager Kevin Cash, which is why his game-entering Leverage Index (gmLI) is sitting at a 1.88, which shows that Erasmo is call into big situations in most games.

Next, if the Rays do go through with this trade, they should get at least two quality prospects. I could see the Rays acquiring Jordan Paroubeck, who is the Dodgers 29th ranked prospect. He plays all three outfield spots, but should be a left fielder with his below average arm. He is a switch hitter that has a sound swing with solid bat speed from both sides of the plate. The 21-year-old needs to make up for a lot of lost at-bats and make more consistent contact, but he has the potential for average power and has shown a willingness to accept walks. He has split time between High Rookie Ball and Low Single-A. Between both, he has produced a slash line of .195/.247/.287 in 87 at-bats. In 24 games, he has hit one home run and drove in three RBIs. He stands at 6’2″ and weighs in at 190 pounds.

Finally, the second prospect that could become a Ray is Dennis Santana, who is a right-handed pitcher that is not on the Dodgers top 30 prospect list. This 20-year-old pitcher has had a good season in Low Single-A, despite having a 1-8 record. He owns a 3.14 ERA in 66 innings. In those 13 games, he started 12 of them and struck out 72 batters, but has walked 37 hitters. Opponents have only hit .203 against him. His command is shaky, but he does have the ability to strikeout many hitters, as I listed. Santana stands at 6’2″, but only weighs 160 pounds, which he will need to add some more weight. Interestingly, he was signed as a shortstop when he first came over from Dominica Republic.

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