Caleb Ferguson has been a trusted member in the Los Angeles Dodgers bullpen for multiple seasons, but has dealt with bouts of inconsistency in 2023 and his latest stumble came in Tuesday’s 8-3 loss to the Cleveland Guardians.
After Bobby Miller pitched 6.1 innings in what was the longest start of his young career, Ferguson inherited two runners on and a 3-2 lead. He retired the first batter, only to then give up three consecutive hits.
That stretch ended with Kole Calhoun hitting the first pitch he saw for a three-run home run that broke the game open for the Guardians.
Following the loss, Ferguson said he merely needed to be sharper, as seen on SportsNet LA:
“Just make better pitches.”
When further asked about the fateful five-run inning, Ferguson specifically highlighted the cutter over the middle of the plate that Calhoun hit for a home run:
“I thought the fastball locations were good and threw a bad breaking ball. They didn’t miss it.”
As for being a high-leverage left-handed relief pitcher, Ferguson expressed disappointment over some of his mishaps this season:
“I think everybody knows what their job is by this time, so when you don’t do it, it’s pretty frustrating.”
Like in the past, the 27-year-old is planning on maintaining confidence and being prepared to pitch whenever Dodgers manager Dave Roberts next inserts him into a game:
“Manager is going to ask me to take the ball tomorrow, so better be ready to go.”
Ferguson now twice has been tabbed with a blown save in his home state of Ohio this season. The first instance was in a walk-off loss to the Cincinnati Reds on June 6. He didn’t get back into a game until three days later, which resulted in another walk-off loss for the Dodgers, though at the hands of the Philadelphia Phillies.
That was part of the Dodgers going 2-4 on a road trip that included three walk-off losses.
Caleb Ferguson stats
Entering play Wednesday, Ferguson is 7-3 with two saves, a 2.87 ERA and 1.45 WHIP across 53 games (two starts).
Roberts has made it clear he intends to continue trusting Ferguson in high-leverage situations but noted the Dodgers will continue to evaluate roles heading in the postseason.
Have you subscribed to the Dodger Blue YouTube channel? Be sure to ring the notification bell to watch player interviews, participate in shows and giveaways, and stay up to date on all Dodgers news and rumors!