Tag: Josh Beckett

Josh Beckett Injury: Updates on Dodgers SP’s Hip and Recovery

It has been a special 2014 season for the first-place Los Angeles Dodgers, but they received some unfortunate news Friday regarding starting pitcher Josh Beckett. Ken Gurnick of MLB.com filled fans in on the latest:

Gurnick made note of another injury as well:

Dodgers manager Don Mattingly believes Beckett could pitch again this year.

It’s a possibility,” Mattingly said, per Doug Padilla of ESPNChicago.com. “At the point we’re talking about, 10 days or two weeks of rest and then starting the (recovery) progression. I anticipate that he will be able to pitch again this year.”

This is a difficult break for the team and Beckett as the Dodgers prepare for the stretch run in their National League West race with rival San Francisco. In 20 starts this year, Beckett sports a sparkling 2.88 ERA and 1.17 WHIP. He has quietly turned in a solid season while fellow pitcher Clayton Kershaw grabbed most of the headlines.

If Beckett is forced to retire, he will likely be remembered for his postseason prowess. He is 7-3 in his playoff career with a 3.07 ERA, but he was particularly impressive in 2003 (2.11 ERA with the Florida Marlins) and 2007 (1.20 ERA with the Boston Red Sox).

As for the Dodgers, they will have to make do with Kershaw and company as they look toward October. ESPNLosAngeles.com’s Mark Saxon provides details on the move the team made to bring in Roberto Hernandez from the Phillies on Thursday:

The Los Angeles Dodgers acquired veteran right-hander Roberto Hernandez from the Philadelphia Phillies for two players to be named later, the teams announced Thursday. The Phillies will receive two “lower-level minor leaguers,” a major league source familiar with the transaction told ESPN.com’s Jayson Stark.

Hernandez, who is starting Friday, will get a chance to fill the Beckett void as the Dodgers look to finish the season strong and maintain their position heading into October.

Check back for updates as they develop.

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Josh Beckett Injury: Updates on Dodgers Pitcher’s Hip and Return

Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher Josh Beckett is in the midst of a great season, but it appears that a hip injury will slow him down temporarily.   

The Dodgers announced Tuesday that they added their starter to the disabled list:

After pitching five shutout innings against the Colorado Rockies on July 6, the 34-year-old right-hander lowered his ERA to 2.26 for the season and improved his record to 6-5 overall. Unfortunately, he left the game after just 82 pitches because he hurt himself on the bases, according to Dylan Hernandez of the Los Angeles Times:

Beckett discussed the issue after the game, saying, “I tweaked the hip. It’s been bothering me. We’ll see where we’re at tomorrow. It’s been a little more of a battle the last couple of weeks. The day I pitch is the best I feel all week,” via Ken Gurnick of MLB.com.

Bill Shaikin of the Los Angeles Times does not think Beckett’s hip injury is too serious:

Beckett is coming off a few injury-filled seasons with the Dodgers, so any issue should be taken seriously. As Shaikin points out, Beckett is no stranger to the DL:

However, the Dodgers will hope that this is just a mild setback before the second half of the 2014 MLB season. Bill Plunkett of the Orange County Register notes that this will take away from the strength of the team:

Fortunately, the unit’s overall depth should help mitigate the loss.

Pedro Baez, who the team recalled from Triple-A Albuquerque to replace Beckett, allowed two runs in his only career inning with Los Angeles earlier this season. He has compiled a 3.54 ERA in 34 games in Double-A and Triple-A this year. 

Beckett will be available to return on July 22, provided that his DL stint lasts only 15 days. 

If the Dodgers are going to keep ahead of the San Francisco Giants in the NL West and make a run this year, they’ll need Beckett healthy for the long haul.


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Dodgers Set Franchise Record by Holding Opponents Hitless for 17 Innings

The Los Angeles Dodgers recently recorded 17 consecutive innings of hitless pitching, setting a team record since the franchise moved to Los Angeles, per the team’s official Twitter account.

Dodgers hurler Hyun-Jin Ryu followed up Sunday’s no-hitter from Josh Beckett by tossing seven perfect innings to begin Monday’s game against the Cincinnati Reds. The streak actually began Saturday night when Paul Maholm held the Philadelphia Phillies without a hit in the bottom of the eighth inning in an eventual 5-3 Phillies victory.

Ryu had a perfect game going through the first seven innings of Monday’s contest until Reds third baseman Todd Frazier led off the top of the eighth with a double down the third base line. Cincinnati went on to score three runs in the inning, all of which were charged to Ryu.

Reds outfielder Chris Heisey hit a sacrifice fly off of the South Korean pitcher, then reliever Brian Wilson allowed both of Ryu‘s inherited runners to score. Closer Kenley Jansen ended the threat with a four-out save in the 4-3 victory.

Prior to Frazier’s double, Maholm had allowed the last hit to a Dodgers opponent, a two-out single by Phillies outfielder Ben Revere in the seventh inning of Saturday’s game.

According to Elias Sports Bureau via ESPN, the 17 innings of hitless pitching matched the longest such streak in Major League Baseball since the Dodgers’ crosstown rivals, the Los Angeles Angels, accomplished the same feat on May 1-3, 2012. As one might expect, the Angels’ 17-inning run also included a no-hitter, one courtesy of long-time staff ace Jered Weaver.


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Josh Beckett’s Spring Is Big X-Factor to Dominant 2014 Dodgers Season

During the Los Angeles Dodgers‘ amazing 62-28 run to finish the 2013 regular season, it’s no surprise that the team’s top two starting pitchers—Clayton Kershaw, Zack Greinke and Hyun-jin Ryu—completely dominated. 

The eventual Cy Young award winner, Kershaw went 11-4 with a 1.61 ERA in 17 starts while holding opposing hitters to a .503 OPS. Greinke went 12-2 in 19 starts while holding opposing hitters to a .589 OPS.

No. 3 starter Hyun-jin Ryu, who finished fourth in NL Rookie of the Year voting behind Jose Fernandez, Yasiel Puig and Shelby Miller, was also very good, as you can imagine. The 26-year-old lefty won eight of his 13 decisions while posting a 3.04 ERA in his 16 starts during that stretch. 

What might be a surprise, though, is how much production the Dodgers got out of the last two spots in the rotation and the pitchers that gave it to them. And if you weren’t paying close enough attention, you may be surprised to know that three-time All-Star Josh Beckett did not make one start during the team’s run. 

It was Ricky Nolasco, Chris Capuano and Edinson Volquez who carried the load at the back of the rotation, while Beckett and Chad Billingsley watched from the sidelines with injuries that ended their respective seasons well before the Dodgers had gotten their act together. 

After being acquired from the Miami Marlins in early July, Nolasco proceeded to go on what was likely his best streak of pitching ever. In his first 12 starts as a Dodger, he went 8-1 with a 2.07 ERA before struggling badly in his last three starts. 

Capuano may have been the weak link, posting a 4.29 ERA in 12 starts from June 23 through August 31 and winning only two games. But he kept his team in the game and gave them a chance to win in a majority of his starts, resulting in nine team victories. 

And while the division had already been wrapped by the time he was inserted into the rotation, Volquez gave the Dodgers four solid starts in September after he had been signed off the scrap heap following his release from the San Diego Padres

So with Capuano, Nolasco and Volquez all signing free-agent deals elsewhere this offseason, the Dodgers will turn to Dan Haren, who signed a one-year, $10 million deal to fill one spot, and, if healthy, Beckett, who would step into the final spot. 

The 33-year-old Beckett was acquired in the blockbuster deal with the Boston Red Sox in August 2012, although he was more of a throw-in to a deal that included hitting star Adrian Gonzalez.

To acquire the big prize in Gonzalez, the Dodgers had to take on the disappointing Carl Crawford and his massive contract and Beckett, who was still owed well over $30 million and struggling to the tune of a 5.23 ERA in 21 starts. 

Still, his strong finish after the trade (2.93 ERA, 43 IP, 43 H, 14 BB, 38 K in seven starts) gave the Dodgers hope that they’d get a strong return on his $15.75 million salary for 2013.

That wasn’t the case, however, as he was knocked around, allowing two homers in four of his first five starts and posting an overall 5.19 ERA by the time he was placed on the disabled list with a strained groin after this eighth start of the season. 

A much bigger issue had also surfaced, however, as Beckett was diagnosed with thoracic outlet syndrome, which had been causing numbness in his pitching hand. He underwent surgery in July to remove his top rib to relieve pressure on a compressed nerve, leaving his status for 2014 in doubt. 

While the Dodgers’ reported pursuit of Japanese star Masahiro Tanaka this offseason indicated that they weren’t too interested in relying on Beckett to come back healthy and productive—the addition of Tanaka would’ve likely pushed Beckett out of the starting rotation mix altogether—they opted to sign Paul Maholm as a relatively inexpensive backup plan, keeping the door open for the former Marlins and Red Sox ace to win a rotation spot. 

The addition of Haren should help, especially if the Dodgers get the second-half-of-2013 version of him (3.52 ERA), as opposed to the one who struggled mightily to start his Washington Nationals career (6.15 ERA in first 15 starts of 2013). But it’s Beckett who could prove to be the X-factor in this Dodgers team living up to expectations and dominating throughout the 2014 season.

If his first start of the spring was any indication—he allowed just one ground-ball single over two shutout innings while striking out three and showing strong command of his fastball and breaking pitches—he’s well on his way to playing a key role in the Dodgers’ season. 

Beckett believes that his injury led to some bad habits, including a drop in his arm slot over the past couple of seasons. After studying video from his successful 2007-2009 seasons with the Red Sox, he picked up on the difference and is returning to his over-the-top delivery in 2014. 

“You certainly create some bad habits,” Beckett said. “I think I slowly started to creep down further and further, not knowing what the injury was.”

Those aforementioned 2007-2009 seasons, in case you’re wondering, resulted in a 49-23 record, 3.71 ERA, 2.0 BB/9 and 8.7 K/9 over 89 starts in a very tough AL East. The Sox made the playoffs in each of those seasons, and Beckett’s impact was great. 

On his way to winning the ALCS MVP in 2007, Beckett went 4-0 while allowing just four earned runs in 30 innings pitched with two walks and 35 strikeouts over four playoff starts as the Sox won the World Series for the second time in four seasons.

He wasn’t nearly as effective in the 2008 and 2009 playoffs, although his reputation from winning the World Series MVP in 2003 while with the Florida Marlins and his brilliant performance in 2007 had already been earned. 

Beckett is entering his age-34 season, so it’s difficult to expect a similar performance from his ages 27-29 seasons.

But a return to health and better command combined with his big-game experience and what still appears to be a good enough fastball—it averaged 92 MPH in his eight starts last season, according to FanGraphs, which was 0.6 MPH higher than in 2012 and only 1.1 MPH less than in 2011, when he had one of his best seasons—could result in the Dodgers having one of the best No. 5 starters in baseball, which could separate them from the pack much sooner than in 2013.

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Josh Beckett Will Reportedly Undergo Season-Ending Surgery

After missing the month of June with thoracic outlet syndrome that caused numbness in his pitching hand, Josh Beckett appears headed for the disabled list for the remainder of the season.

As Bill Shaikin of the Los Angeles Times reported, the right-hander will be shut down for the rest of the season as he undergoes surgery to relieve pressure in his neck causing the numbness:

Ken Gurnick and Austin Laymance of MLB.com reported on Friday that Beckett would begin a throwing program in an attempt to repair the issue without surgery. As it turns out, the program didn’t yield the results that Beckett or the Los Angeles Dodgers were hoping for.

When the 33-year-old began experiencing problems in early June, some questioned his ability to ever return to the mound. As Andrew Gastelum of the Los Angeles Times noted, Beckett was trying to avoid surgery at all costs:

Surgery is Plan F. You always want to avoid surgery if you can. We are going to try a lot of different things in the next four weeks to try to reassess things. There’s a lot of guys that have had this, and there’s a lot of guys who have had surgery who were successful. There’s a few guys it hasn’t been successful. We’re going to do everything we can to beat this thing without surgery. If we have to move that way, that’s what we’ll do.

Unfortunately, Beckett will now be forced to find out if he can return after said surgery. Given his poor performance this season (0-5, 5.19 ERA) and the Dodgers’ struggles, opting for a long-term fix may be the best option for both parties.

At 36-43, Los Angeles remains at the bottom of the NL West and 5.5 games behind the division-leading Arizona Diamondbacks. The team has made progress in recent weeks, posting a 7-3 record in its last 10 games, but the Dodgers still face some serious questions—starting with the health of some of their marquee players.

With Beckett’s season-ending surgery, the Dodgers now have one more hole to fill. While he hasn’t contributed in the last month, manager Don Mattingly will now have no choice but to consider long-term options to fill Beckett’s spot in the rotation for the rest of the season.

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Ranking the 10 Most Shocking MLB Trades of 2012

MLB personnel moves are frequently prefaced by fan speculation, media probing or an executive announcement. Somebody usually spoils the surprise.

This article celebrates 10 exceptions to that norm that were completed in 2012.

The players involved ranged from future first-ballot Hall of Famers to lifetime reserves. The reasons for relocation varied, too.

However, they all understand what it’s like to be moved in a shocking trade.

Let’s review their experiences from the past year.

Begin Slideshow

Report: Josh Beckett Will Make Dodgers Debut on Monday vs. Rockies

The Los Angeles Dodgers will not waste time getting newly acquired Josh Beckett on the mound as he will make his first start for the club on Monday.

Beckett was sent to L.A. along with Adrian Gonzalez, Carl Crawford and Nick Punto for James Loney, Allen Webster, Ivan De Jesus, Rubby De La Rosa and Jerry Sands, according to ESPN’s Mark Saxon.

Los Angeles general manager Ned Colletti announced that Beckett would be pitching in Monday’s game after the trade became official, according to Drew Silva of NBC’s Hardball Talk. Silva notes that Beckett will be taking the place of Chad Billingsley, who according to the Los Angeles Times’ Dylan Hernandez, will not be back in the lineup anytime soon.

Beckett’s first start will be a divisional battle against the Colorado Rockies. The game will be at Coors Field and will start at 8:40 p.m. ET.

Colletti and Dodgers fans will be hoping that Beckett performs better in Los Angeles than he has in Boston this season. The 6’5″, 220-pound right-hander is 5-11 in 21 outings this season with a 5.23 ERA. He has recorded 94 strikeouts and 38 walks in 127.1 innings pitched.

He has faced controversy this season due to his lackluster production and an incident where he was seen playing golf the day after missing a start due to injury. The Dodgers will need him to be more focused on baseball as they try to make a run in the postseason.

Beckett’s playoff numbers are the most encouraging sign of his possible success with his new team; he is 7-3 with 3.07 ERA and 99 strikeouts compared to 21 walks in 93.2 innings.

With the season winding down, Monday’s game will provide hints as to how committed Beckett is to succeeding with the Dodgers.

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Josh Beckett: New Dodgers Pitcher Will Benefit Greatly from Move Back to NL

Josh Beckett has been traded to the Los Angeles Dodgers—a move back to the National League that will revitalize his career. 

Los Angeles Times Dodgers beat writer Dylan Hernandez reports:


For Beckett, this move signals a new phase in his career. It’s been a rough last few years for the once-dominant pitcher, but a new chapter gives him reason for hope.

From Bleacher Report’s Zachary Rymer:


There are two major reasons that moving to LA is going to help Beckett return to form. 


Dodger Stadium is a Pitcher’s Ballpark

There’s no doubt that Dodger Stadium is going to help Beckett’s cause.  While Fenway Park is the third most hitter-friendly park in MLB, Dodger Stadium ranks in a tie for 21st.

Aside from the fact that there’s no short porch in left field, the cool breeze from the Pacific Ocean routinely makes its way into the ballpark during late-afternoon and night games. This causes the opposite effect as hot air, and balls don’t travel as far.

Outfielders have more room to roam, too, and the combination of distance and the ocean breeze equals less runs scored. 

As Beckett starts to see that his pitches aren’t leaving the ballpark, he’s going to become more confident. Pitchers can get shell-shocked, and that’s what I’ve seen from Beckett the last few years. He lost a ton of confidence, causing his overall performance to suffer greatly. 


No Designated Hitters

Some of the best hitters in the American League come from the DH position. 

If we compared an average DH and an average pitcher at the plate, there would inevitably be a massive difference in talent. Most pitchers are lucky to drop down a nice sacrifice bunt on occasion, while most DH are RBI-producing machines. 

Beckett will have one less slugger to deal with on a nightly basis in the NL, and we’re going to see his ERA go down and his winning percentage go up as a result. 

I’m not saying that Beckett is going to turn into Cy Young here, but he is going to become a nice addition to the Dodgers’ pitching rotation. I fully expect him to win more games than he loses going forward, and I believe this trade may add a couple of years to his career. 


Follow me on Twitter @JesseReed78

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Josh Beckett Injury: Updates on Red Sox Pitcher’s Back Injury

There may be bad news on the horizon for the Boston Red Sox. Starting pitcher Josh Beckett made an early departure from Tuesday night’s contest against Detroit.

Providence Journal’s Brian MacPherson reported on the situation:


UPDATE: Tuesday, July 31, 9:05 p.m. ET by Eric Ball

Information is slowly coming out on the specific reason for Beckett’s early departure and Ian Browne of MLB.com confirms it was back spasms:


Beckett threw 49 pitches in 2.2 innings while allowing one run before coming out of the game. After mowing down the first eight Detroit Tigers, Beckett surrendered a single, hit a batter and gave up back-to-back walks.

On the final pitch to Miguel Cabrera in the second walk, he motioned for the Sox training staff to come to the mound. The trainer appeared to be focusing on the left side of his lower back before deeming him unable to keep pitching.

No word yet on how severe the injury is and if he’ll make his next scheduled start. 


———End of Update——–


An injury would be disappointing to the Red Sox faithful, but it’s not surprising. Beckett has only cleared the 200 inning threshold three times in his 11-year career, and he’s seemingly always on the disabled list. 

Beckett has been healthy so far this season, but one injury could be the start of an excruciating process. His body is fragile, and with his increasing age, he can’t bounce back like he’d prefer. Any minor strain could potentially lead to time on the injured list.

On paper, Beckett may not seem like a big loss. He’s 5-9 this year with an ERA over 4.50. He’s not the pitcher he once was, and his consistency comes and goes. Sometimes he looks “lights out.” Other times he looks extremely hittable.

Nonetheless, Boston is 23rd in the league in team ERA and 25th in quality starts. As bad as Beckett has been at times, they can’t afford to lose any arms at this crucial point in the season.

Knowing Beckett’s injury-plagued past, this situation is worth keeping an eye on. When we know more about the gravity of Beckett’s injury, so will you.

Stay tuned for more information.

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Red Sox Trade Rumors: Boston Should Keep Pitcher Josh Beckett

With the Texas Rangers reportedly not interested in trading for Josh Beckett (h/t Rob Bradford, weei.com), the Boston Red Sox should just hold on to the 32-year-old right-hander.

The Rangers, with their exceptionally deep and talented prospect pool, would have been an ideal trading partner for the Red Sox, who are currently in last place in the AL East. But with Texas turning their attention elsewhere, Boston might as well keep the three-time All-Star.

Even though it’s a down year for the Red Sox, they’re always one strong offseason away from returning to prominence. If they want to make more of an impact next season, they’d be smart to keep Beckett, rather than ditching a key member of their rotation just for the sake of making a move.

Sure, Beckett enraged Boston fans with his recent chicken, beer and golf escapades. And yes, his current 4.57 ERA isn’t exactly ideal. Still, let’s not forget that just one season ago he went 13-7 while posting a 2.89 ERA and striking out 175 batters.

Beckett still has plenty of quality innings left in him, and he’s too good to be included in a deal that wouldn’t bring back some major assets. The Red Sox should keep him on the roster, add to their rotation in the offseason, and look to make a strong playoff push in the 2013 season.

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