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2014 Dodgers review: Dan Haren

Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

Dan Haren had an up-and-down season for the Dodgers in 2014. Here is a look back at the season for the veteran right-hander.

What went right

Haren got off to a good start to the season, which was even more important for stability with both Clayton Kershaw and Hyun-jin Ryu seeing time on the disabled list. Haren was 5-1 with a 2.84 ERA after eight starts, with a decent 17.9-percent strikeout rate but more importantly a tiny 4.2-percent walk rate.

The right-hander lasted at least six innings in 11 of his first 12 starts, and lasted 5⅔ innings in the other start.

Haren also put on a strong finishing kick, again when the Dodgers' starting depth was tested — with Roberto Hernandez and Kevin Correia getting starts at the beginning of August. Over his final 10 starts Haren was 5-2 with a 2.43 ERA, with a 22.6-percent strikeout rate and 3.6-percent walk rate.

Haren allowed two or fewer runs in eight of his final 10 starts.

In 2014 Haren joined Twitter with one of the best handles in all of social media: @ithrow88.

What went wrong

While the first eight and last 10 starts were just what the Dodgers wanted out of Haren — albeit in different ways (his ground ball rate in those first eight starts was 49.4 percent; the ground ball rate was way down to 36.8 percent in his final 10 outings — those middle 14 starts were terrible, with Haren coming dangerously close to pitching himself out of the rotation.

Haren was 3-8 with a 6.04 ERA in 14 starts from May 18 to Aug. 1, with a whopping 19 home runs allowed in 76 innings. Opposing batters during that span hit .292/.333/.538 against Haren.

It got especially bad over the final five starts of that stretch, from July 5 to Aug. 1, with a 10.03 ERA during that span - 27 runs and 36 hits, including six home runs in just 23⅓ innings.

Haren also needed surgery after the season, but it was on his left (non-throwing) shoulder. The Oct. 22 procedure was to clean out bursitis in the A-C joint in Haren's shoulder, and isn't expected to affect his readiness for spring training in 2015.

Haren has also never tried fish in his life. Ever.

2014 particulars

Age: 33

Salary: $12.5 million, including a $10 million base salary and $2.5 million of a possible $3 million in bonuses based on innings ($250,000 for each of 150, 160 and 170 innings; $500,000 in 180 innings) and starts ($250,000 for each of 24, 27 and 30 starts; $500,000 for 32 starts)

Game of the year

On June 30 at Dodger Stadium, Haren pitched seven scoreless innings in a win over the Indians, allowing only one hit and one walk while striking out five. Haren snapped a string of nine straight starts allowing a home run, and against Cleveland retired his final 13 batters faced.

Roster status

By reaching 180 innings, Haren's $10 million club option for 2015 became a player option. Haren exercised the option on Oct. 30, and will return to the Dodgers for one more year.