Caleb Ferguson started the season in double-A Tulsa, but quickly moved up and found himself as a key member of the Dodgers bullpen for the 2018 season.
What went right
After three rough starts to begin his career, Ferguson was moved to the bullpen. The 22-year-old owned an ERA of 7.59, and it looked as if his time in the big-leagues would be short-lived. Instead, he turned things around to become one of the biggest surprises of the 2018 season.
From July until the end of the season, Ferguson had a 2.52 ERA and a 1.05 WHIP. He was striking out nearly 1⁄3 of batters he faced (29.5%), and only issued five walks in 32 1⁄3 innings.
Ferguson was dominant against left-handed batters, holding them to a .176 average.
The month of July was really the coming out party for Ferguson. His 1.20 ERA was second in the national league from pitchers with at least 15 innings, and his WHIP of 0.67 was the lowest. He struck out 32.1 percent of batters, which was second-best in the NL. Even more impressive, his 1.8 walk percentage was the lowest in all of baseball.
Ferguson made the postseason roster for the NLDS and NLCS. He made six appearances, throwing three innings of shutout ball, allowing zero hits and striking out three.
What went wrong
It was a rough opening month for the rookie. He only lasted 1 2⁄3 innings in his first career start, allowing four runs to go along with three walks. He would allow five runs over the course of his next two starts, and his ERA through three games was 7.59.
Though Ferguson threw three hitless innings in the postseason, he was left off the Dodgers’ World Series roster.
Stats: 7-2, 3.49 ERA, 1.122 WHIP, 59 SO, 49 IP, 3.79 FIP, 112 ERA+
Game of the year
Ferguson made his bullpen debut on June 23 on the road versus the Mets. He came out of the pen to throw four innings. For the 22-year-old, it was his first outing allowing zero runs. He struck out six, and only issued one walk, all while picking up his first career major-league victory.
Ferguson will head in the 2018 season as a reliable arm out of the Dodgers bullpen. He has three options remaining.