Yhency Brazoban and the Dodgers avoided arbitration when they agreed to a contract yesterday. Brazoban came over with Jeff Weaver in the Kevin Brown trade and quickly made an impact on the pennant winning team of 2004. It was because of his dominance in AA & AAA during the 2004 season that Depodesta felt comfortable trading the Dodgers main setup man in the big deal that brought us Brad Penny. The trade didn't work out in 2004 but it has paid major dividends with Penny being the ace of the staff since then and allowing Martin to have a clear shot at the catching position.
Yhency did his part in 2004. He came up and filled the void left by Mota and posted an ERA+ of 165 in 31 games. Mota on the other hand posted an ERA+ of 91 during his stint with Florida in 2004. When Gagne went down in 2005, Yhency became the closer and in the beginning he was able to handle the role and was pitching great until May 13th. At that point he had 11 saves, an ERA of 1.88, and T-Shirts called Ghame Over were being seen throughout the southland. That was his peak, and it has all been downhill since then. He ended 2005 with a 5.33 ERA and an ERA+ of only 77. He has missed most of the last two years with surgeries so we have no idea what he has left in his shoulder.
I'm not expecting much, I think we have already seen the best of Yhency and just like Tsao last year I doubt he will even end the season on the roster. I'm hoping he proves me wrong and that he can become a solid setup man in 2008.