Los Angeles is looking to add to its bullpen before the start of the regular season, and according to FOX Sports' Ken Rosenthal, the Dodgers are "showing interest" in free agent right-handed reliever Joba Chamberlain. Chamberlain has spent every season, with the exception of 2014, as a member of the New York Yankees.
Chamberlain, 29, posted a 3.57 ERA and 3.16 FIP in 63.0 innings pitched with the Detroit Tigers last season. He also saved five games, and has proven to be a valuable right-handed relief option late in games. Chamberlain left 72.7 percent of runners on base in 2014, and has a career 3.68 ERA and 3.16 FIP.
While the Dodgers had not been seeking bullpen help, the organization was forced to explore possible veteran options after learning closer Kenley Jansen needs foot surgery and may be out for the first two months of the season. Earlier in the week, USA Today's Bob Nightengale reported the Dodgers could be interested in Francisco Rodriguez, who is looking for a one-year deal worth $10 million. Rodriguez was thought to be considering a two-year deal, but Los Angeles may only be interested in K-Rod as a short term closer or reliever.
Although he is one of only a few durable and experienced right-handed relievers still available on the market, Chamberlain has not drawn a notable amount of interest this offseason. Los Angeles announced on Tuesday that Jansen will be out for eight to twelve weeks, according to Michigan Live's James Schmehl, and the Dodgers could also still be searching for middle relief help. Schmehl also notes the Dodgers had shown little, if any, interest in Chamberlain this offseason, however have been forced to adjust their outlook following Jansen's injury.
Rosenthal reported earlier this month that Chamberlain remained "available by choice" and turned down offers from teams he was not interested in joining. The Marlins had also been linked to Chamberlain, however MLB.com's Joe Frisaro noted Miami is not interested. Chamberlain will likely receive a one-year deal with a low base salary from a team hoping he can thrive as he did in the first half of 2014. Detroit may only be interested in Chamberlain if he were to accept a minor league deal, and since he wants a major league contract and Los Angeles needs a temporary closer, the Dodgers are likely the favorite to sign him in the coming weeks.