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2013 Dodgers player profile: Brandon League, the closer

League saved six games for the 2012 Dodgers but a new three-year contract and management's pronouncement of League's role appear to appoint as the closer when the season starts.

Stephen Dunn

These few hundred words about Brandon League starts the Dodger player profiles for the 2013 season. These profiles will take you just about to opening day.

Free agent to be Brandon League was acquired from the Seattle Mariners on July 30, 2012 for minor league outfielder Leon Landry (Baseball America's No. 17 prospect in Seattle's system) and minor league RHP Logan Bawcom (who was invited as a non-roster invitee to Seattle's major league camp).

League didn't have a great start as a Dodger, as in his first seven appearances and six innings, he gave up six earned runs, nine hits, three walks and five strikeouts with a loss and a hold. But as bad as he was in those games, he finished the season giving up one earned run in 21⅓ innings with two wins and six saves. He also had a 22/11 strikeout-to-walk ratio.


Not only was League part of only the second six-pitcher no-hitter in MLB history, he was also the first native-born Hawaiian pitcher to pitch (at least part of) a no-hitter.

Contract Status

League signed a three-year contract for a guaranteed of $22.5 million, the largest contract ever signed by a Dodgers reliever. With incentives and a player option for the fourth year reached, he can make up to $33.5 million in total. As for 2013, League will make at least $4.5 million plus $1 million of his signing bonus that he already received. He can also make between $150,000 and $500,000 in total if he finishes 55-65 games. League has only finished 60 games once, in 2011, and has never finished over 39 games in any other season.


Year Age IP BB/9 K/9 ERA FIP
2010 27 79 3.08 6.38 3.42 3.91
2011 28 671 1.47 6.60 2.79 2.78
2012 29 72 4.13 6.75 3.13 3.19
2013 Projections - Age 30 Season
Source IP BB/9 K/9 ERA FIP
Bill James 77
3.27 6.78 3.51 3.58
ZiPS 67.. 3.05 7.05 3.46 3.42

2013 Outlook

My guess for League is 62⅓ innings, 28 fames finished, a 2.90 ERA, and 15 saves.

What is your prediction? Be sure to guess League's ERA, number of innings pitched, saves, plus anything else you would like to predict.