Dodgers starter Josh Beckett is still having trouble gripping his off-speed pitches after getting his thumb caught in a set of doors a few days ago, according to the Los Angeles Times' Dylan Hernandez. The injury is understandably frustrating for Beckett.
"I come back from thoracic outlet syndrome and this is what I’m dealing with."
Beckett, 33, has appeared in just 86⅓ innings with the Dodgers after being traded by the Red Sox in 2012.
Over that span, he's posted a 4.07 ERA in 15 starts. The Dodgers' rare financial flexibility allows them to absorb his $15.75 million more easily than most teams could, but they could benefit significantly if Beckett has a bounce-back year in 2014.
He is set to become a free agent after the season, and although a vintage Josh Beckett season might not be unlikely, if he is able to channel some of his former success, he could become a valuable trade chip, or perhaps, a potential candidate for the qualifying offer next winter. Of course, the slow markets for fringe players this offseason will certainly cause the Dodgers to hesitate in extending Beckett the offer even if he pitches well due to the chance that he might accept it. However, if he put up numbers like he did in 2011 -- 2.89 ERA in 193 innings -- the possibility for a compensatory draft pick could present itself to Los Angeles.
Beckett said he hopes to be available to pitch when the team returns from their Opening Series against the Diamondbacks in Australia.