He's baaaaaack...on the 40-man roster. (Photo: Jon SooHoo / LA Dodgers)
The Dodgers are off on Thursday, but they did make one roster move. Ronald Belisario, who was on the restricted list all of last season, was reinstated, and to make room on the 40-man roster the Dodgers designated Ramon Troncoso for assignment.
Belisario still must serve a 25-game suspension for violating MLB's drug policy, presumably for testing positive for cocaine, something the reliever said last month that he only tried once. Belisario needed to be on the 40-man roster to serve that suspension.
Both Belisario and Troncoso emerged from relative obscurity to bolster the Dodgers bullpen in 2009. Troncoso was a ground ball machine in his second year, and put up a 2.72 ERA in 83 innings. His highlight moment was a four-inning save in Coors Field on April 25, 2009, protecting a one-run lead the entire time. Belisario was even better, putting up a 2.04 ERA with 64 strikeouts in 71 innings.
But both have struggled mightily since. Troncoso hasn't recovered from being overused in early 2010, as he made 14 appearances in a 19-game stretch over 21 days in April 2010. In the last two years Troncoso has a 5.05 ERA with 12 home runs allowed in 77 major league innings, and a 5.24 ERA with 13 home runs allowed in 79 minor league innings.
Troncoso, who is out of options, was a longshot to make the team. If he clears waivers he can be outrighted to the minors.
Belisario was arrested for DUI in 2009 in Pasadena, was over five weeks late to spring training in 2010, then was placed on the restricted list in July 2010 while being treated for a substance abuse problem, something he says wasn't related to his cocaine use. He could not get a visa last year and missed the season.
The earliest game Ronald Belisario is eligible to play is May 4 against the Chicago Cubs. At that time, the Dodgers will have a decision to make as Belisario is out of options as well.
There are 44 players remaining in major league camp for the Dodgers.