A look back at the 2017 season of Brandon McCarthy, one of six Dodgers to make at least 16 starts this season.
What went right
2017 was McCarthy’s healthiest year with the Dodgers, though that wasn’t exactly a high hurdle to clear. His 92⅔ innings in 2017 surpassed his total from 2015-16 combined (63 innings).
McCarthy made 16 starts and was a staple in the Dodgers rotation through the All-Star break. He had a quality start in half of his starts, the third-highest percentage on the staff, trailing only Clayton Kershaw and Alex Wood.
He had a 2.87 ERA in his first 12 starts.
After a season cut short by the yips, McCarthy walked two or fewer batters in 14 of his 16 starts, including 13 straight. He walked 27 batters in 92⅔ innings in 2017 after walking 26 batters in 40 innings in 2016.
McCarthy’s ground ball rate of 42% was his highest since 2014, and he only allowed five home runs. Opposing batters hit .256/.313/.354 against McCarthy in 2017, his .098 isolated power allowed the lowest among the starting staff.
What went wrong
McCarthy had a brief recurrence of command loss with three wild pitches on June 25 against the Rockies, though this was a pretty specific issue with just one pitch, his cutter.
McCarthy’s strikeout rate of 18.8% was his lowest since 2013.
He missed two months with a blister on his right hand, one of three disabled list stints on the season for McCarthy.
McCarthy was a suprise addition to the World Series roster, but in his only appearance — his postseason debut — he allowed a two-run home run to George Springer in the 11th inning to take the loss in Game 2.
Stats: 3.98 ERA, 3.28 FIP, 92⅔ IP, 72 K, 27 BB
Salary: $10 million
Game of the year
McCarthy owned the Cubs in 2017, with two starts of six scoreless innings each against them. The pick here is his May 27 start against Chicago at Dodger Stadium, in which he allowed only two singles and a walk while striking out six.
McCarthy will make $10 million in 2018, the final season of his four-year contract with the Dodgers.