Last week, the Dodgers signed veteran pitcher Danny Duffy to a one-year contract with a club option for the 2023 season. Duffy will open the season on the 60-day Injured List, aiming for a midseason return.
While speaking with reporters on Sunday, Duffy said he’s aiming towards returning in either late June or early July.
#Dodgers Danny Duffy said when he got surgery, Dr. Neal ElAttrache told him he could return as early as May. But with LA using him as a reliever, the team is going to be cautious with the left-hander, aiming for late June or early July.— Juan Toribio (@juanctoribio) March 20, 2022
Luckily for the Dodgers, they’re in no rush for Duffy’s return, so it makes sense to be extra cautious as he works his way back. Once Duffy returns from the IL, he’ll be used primarily as a reliever.
Duffy has spent the majority of his career as a starter, with only 30 of his 234 appearances coming out of the bullpen. By the time he returns, it’ll be at least a year since his last big-league appearance, so converting to a full-time reliever makes sense.
Luckily for Duffy, he avoided Tommy John surgery in the fall. He told reporters that he likely would have retired had he needed the surgery. Instead, he’ll be back with LA. Duffy said returning to the Dodgers was a “no brainer” and that he had “unfinished business”.
“I just think I have a lot left in the tank, and I didn’t get to help all last year and that was devastating.”