Brad Havens was one of 10 pitchers to make the Dodgers' opening day roster in 1988, but was mostly used in low leverage situations. His role was perhaps best revealed by a quote from manager Tommy Lasorda on Apr. 14, when Fernando Valenzuela was left in to throw 150 pitches, including walking in a run in a 2-0 loss to the Padres in San Diego.
Asked if he should have left Valenzuela in the game despite getting tired, Lasorda told the Los Angeles Times, "Absolutely. Who should have I brought in? Havens?"
How acquired: The Dodgers acquired Havens along with outfielder Orioles on May 22, 1987, in exchange for relief pitcher Tom Niedenfuer. Havens in his career was involved in two trades along with Dodgers center fielders, as the Angels traded him in 1979 along with Ken Landreaux and two others to the Twins for Hall of Famer Rod Carew.from the
Prior MLB experience: In parts of six major league seasons from 1981-1987, Havens was 21-32 with 311 strikeouts in 487⅔ innings. Havens was mostly a starter from 1981-1983, including starting opening day in 1983, and put up a 5.00 ERA during that span with the Twins, including 208⅔ innings in 1982. After spending all of 1984 in the minors, Havens emerged again in the major leagues, this time as a reliever and from 1985-1987 put up — wait for it — a 5.00 ERA.
1988 age: 28
1988 stats: Havens pitched in nine games for the Dodgers, and allowed five runs and 15 hits in 9⅔ innings for a 4.66 ERA, with eight strikeouts and four walks.
Regular season game of the year: Havens was the last man in the bullpen in his time with the Dodgers, and as a result only two of his nine games were Dodgers wins. One of those came on Apr. 7, when Havens retired both batters he faced in the sixth inning against the Braves in Atlanta.
NLCS & World Series performance: Havens opened the season in the Dodgers bullpen, but was gone a little over a month later, as he refused an outright assignment to Triple-A Albuquerque in May.
Post-1988 playing career: Havens ended 1988 in Cleveland, and put up a 3.14 ERA in 28 games in relief with the Indians. Havens pitched one more season in the major leagues, and had a combined 5.00 ERA in 20 games and 36 innings with the Indians and Tigers in 1989.
Where he is now: No idea, but there is a Brad Havens Baseball Clinics, Inc. in his home state of Michigan.