The Dodgers are "closing in" on a multi-year deal with lefty reliever J.P. Howell, according to Ken Gurnick of Dodgers.com. The deal is for two-years, 11.25 million with a 6.25 million vesting option, according to Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports.
The 30-year-old posted a career-best 2.03 ERA over 62 innings with the Dodgers in 2013. The southpaw has been incredibly effective against his fellow lefties throughout his career, making him an ideal specialist out of the bullpen. In 2013, he held the 121 lefties he faced to a .161/.225/.227 line. During his career, lefties have hit just .223/.306/.328 against him. However, he has shown the ability to succeed against righties at times as well, using his sinker to prevent extra base hits. Last season, he was particularly successful at that, holding 125 righties to a .218/.312/.296 line.
If the Dodgers are able to get this deal done, they will have locked up two key free agents from their 2013 bullpen. The team signed righty Brian Wilson to a one-year deal worth $14 million with a player option for 2015 on December 5.