What went right
On a team that started the season with eight starting pitchers under contract, Fife maintained a positive attitude as the ninth man on the totem pole.
"They told me don't count yourself out, that type of thing, but there are eight guys ahead of me making a lot of money. Last year there were six or seven guys ahead of me last year and I didn't really know what was going to happen but I got my chance and it happened to be in July," Fife said during spring training. "I'm just trying to prove that I can continue to pitch and be consistent, and if the opportunity arises hopefully I can produce successfully."
By the 18th game of the year, he was pitching for the Dodgers, though after allowing four runs in Baltimore he went on the disabled list with right shoulder bursitis. He came back in June with a vengeance, going 3-2 with a 2.21 ERA, 30 strikeouts and 10 walks, allowing just 10 total runs in six starts.
His highlight was seven scoreless frames to beat the Phillies on June 30.
Just before the All-Star break Fife beat out Chris Capuano for the fifth starter spot, but ...
What went wrong
Shoulder bursitis sidelined Fife again and he was essentially a spot starter for the Dodgers the rest of the way. He pitched scoreless ball into the sixth inning at Wrigley Field on Aug. 4 but just about everything went haywire for Fife after that.
An ill-fated trip to the bullpen in Triple-A Albuquerque had Fife out of whack and he allowed 16 runs on 19 hits in 14 innings with the Isotopes, but more importantly had 16 walks and just six strikeouts during that span. After getting called up to the Dodgers, in September, he allowed 11 runs on 16 hits and seven walks in 7⅓ innings, with five strikeouts in three September games with the Dodgers.
Fife, 27, is five days shy of a full year of major league service time. He has one option year remaining, so look for him to continue the yo-yo between Albuquerque and Los Angeles next season.