Dave Roberts: Dodgers ‘Betting On’ Bounce Back From Ryan Madson
Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports

Prior to their victory over the Arizona Diamondbacks on Friday, the Los Angeles Dodgers further bolstered their Major League depth in completing a pair of transactions ahead of the Aug. 31 waiver trade deadline.


The first of said moves addressed the bullpen, as the Dodgers acquired veteran right-hander Ryan Madson from the Washington Nationals in exchange for Minor League reliever Andrew Istler.

The 38-year-old, with experience as both a setup man and closer, brings a winning pedigree to the Dodgers’ pitching staff in previously capturing two World Series with the Philadelphia Phillies (2008) and Kansas City Royals (2015).

Despite his impressive track record, Madson finds himself in the midst of a disappointing campaign. In 49 games with the Nationals this season, he posted a 5.28 ERA, 4.35 FIP and 1.42 WHIP with 41 strikeouts against 15 walks over 44.1 innings pitched.

Dodgers manager Dave Roberts is banking on Madson revitalizing his career in Los Angeles, however, citing his arsenal and the opportunity to learn from pitching coach Rick Honeycutt, per Bill Plunkett of the Southern California News Group:

“The numbers aren’t indicative of the stuff and what he’s done as far as (being) proven and having pitched in big spots,” Roberts said. “So for us, we’re betting on the stuff and the person. Now when you get into sequencing and how you’re using your stuff, I just think our front office, our R&D guys with Rick (Honeycutt) and Mark (Prior) kind of tag-teaming, we’ll bet on giving him the best chance at having success here.”

While Madson has struggled this season, there’s plenty of reason for optimism in regards to a potential turnaround. The Long Beach native still deploys an elite changeup, which had previously been underutilized with the Nationals.

Madson’s fastball velocity is still registering in the mid-90s as well, further supporting the notion that the Dodgers could catch lightning in a bottle with their new acquisition.