The Los Angeles Dodgers have an abundance of starting pitching currently on the roster, but one player who is waiting in the wings for an opportunity is the 22 year old Zach Lee. With both Chad Billingsley and Josh Beckett coming off of injuries still not even sure when they’ll be ready to step back on a pitching mound and the fact that both of their contracts are up after next season, one has to wonder if it’s time the Dodgers pulled the plug on one of them and traded one away to make room to see what Lee can actually do at the big league level. Zach is the second ranked prospect in the Dodgers organization only behind Yasiel Puig, and we all know how well Puig did. Maybe it’s time the Dodgers bring up Lee and let him rip on major league ball clubs.
Lee went 9-6 with a 3.47 ERA in 2011 while in the minors. 2012 didn’t go as well for him with a 6-6 record and a 4.39 ERA. However, 2013 was his most promising minor league season yet when he posted a 10-10 record but had a 3.22 ERA and he was a mid-season All-Star. If Billingsley or Beckett aren’t able to pitch by opening day, the Dodgers may be forced to promote from within, and Lee appears to be headed in the right direction. Ricky Nolasco and Chris Capuano are both not likely to return next season which makes Lee’s debut even more likely. I recently was rather tough on another prospect in the Dodgers organization, Dee Gordon. He hasn’t done much for the Dodgers and has bounced back and forth between the minor leagues. If the Dodgers are willing to put up with that, then they should be willing to give Lee a shot at the fifth spot in the 2014 starting rotation. Young prospects only have so long before they’re no longer considered prospects and the word bust is now used on them. There’s no time better than the present to see what Lee can do and hope for the best.