By John Shea @real_johnshea on June 23, 2014
The Los Angeles Dodgers have failed to satisfy early season expectations despite receiving outstanding starting pitching on a night-to-night basis. The Dodgers flaunt the fifth-best team ERA (3.32) in all of baseball but are just seven games over the .500 mark as the halfway point nears. Los Angeles has come on strong as of late, making up significant ground in the NL West, but must part with five players in order to maximize their chances.
The offseason acquisition of Maholm didn't seem to make sense from a statistical standpoint from the get-go. Maholm has struggled throughout his career against NL West opponents, posting ERAs of 4.27 or worse against each division rival. He owns an inefficient 5.04 ERA in 50 innings of work during 19 appearances this season. The Dodgers can make good on a bad decision by ousting Maholm for good before the 2014 MLB trade deadline.
Figgins earned a 25-man roster in part because of his veteran leadership qualities but mostly because of his outstanding play during Spring Training. He's since suffered a quadriceps strain, forcing him onto the DL. The 12-year veteran has been marginally productive in 2014, registering a .373 on-base percentage in 76 plate appearances. The Dodgers won't have room for a minute role player down the stretch, creating a need to unload Figgins.
Dodgers fans have seen all they would ever want to from Romak, who owns a whopping .056 batting average in 18 at bats this season. The 28-year-old Canadian native has no business being in Dodgers blue, despite team-wide injury troubles. Romak has recorded just one hit while striking out seven times in limited action across four positions in 14 games this season. Assuming the Dodgers can get healthy, Romak is a bona fide DFA candidate.
"The Beard" was awarded the ridiculous not-worth-it contract he sought after over the offseason, signing a one-year, $ 10 million deal. Wilson was a vital part of the Dodgers' bullpen during the postseason run in 2013, but he has been everything short of spectacular this season. The nine-year veteran owns a 5.19 ERA with a glaring 1.885 WHIP. His velocity is down whereas his control is spotty at best. Wilson no longer needs to be feared.
The Dodgers' infamous outfield carousel has become a reality television show of sorts -- that is, if fans in the greater Los Angeles area were actually able to watch their team on TV. Crawford is officially expendable. His proneness to injury is a nagging problem that will never disappear. He's currently on the DL with an ankle sprain. The four-time All-Star owns a concerning .693 OPS with just 11 extra-base hits in 150 at-bats. He needs to go.
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