In an impressive continuation of LA’s initiative to rejuvenate veterans who have lost their edge, the Dodgers have achieved notable success in reigniting the aspirations of individuals who consistently compete as contenders. A prime example this year is the redemption story of Ryan Brasier, a former Red Sox reliever who, after encountering difficulties at Fenway, underwent a change that his former manager, Alex Cora, deemed necessary. This transition has not only marked a significant shift for Brasier but has also fortified the Dodgers’ bullpen at the iconic Ravine stadium.
Previously part of the 2018 champion Red Sox team, Brasier’s performance had been commendable during his tenure with the franchise. Across six seasons, he maintained a reliever ERA of 4.25, a respectable statistic that underscored his integral role in the bullpen.
However, his journey took a transformative turn upon joining the Dodgers, particularly through the guidance of Mark Prior’s pitching lab. This season has witnessed Brasier’s remarkable reinvention, a stark contrast to his time with Boston. Demonstrating one of the lowest ERAs among relievers in recent months, Brasier’s contributions have been crucial for Dave Roberts’ bullpen, especially considering the setbacks posed by injuries and inefficiencies among LA’s relievers this year.
While the mission is still a work in progress, Brasier has undeniably redirected his trajectory in a positive manner, an essential feat for a team in need of such momentum.
“At the end, it was a grind (for him) here,” Red Sox manager Alex Cora said. “And the spot that he was in, we pitched him a lot. Right now, I think he’s in a better spot as far as that. He’s been able to get his rest. Usage-wise, yeah, the cutter’s part of it. But he’s still throwing strikes, something he did here (in the past). He feels that the fastball is kind of like back to ’18 and ’21. I think it’s just the body. He was able to reset.”
As the postseason looms ever closer, Brasier’s presence in the bullpen emerges as a linchpin for the Dodgers’ aspirations in the 2023 playoffs. His adeptness on the mound and pivotal innings are poised to play a pivotal role in the team’s pursuit of a successful October campaign, showcasing the resilience and dedication that underscore his personal turnaround and the Dodgers’ collective determination.