Dodgers 2016 Player Review: Jesse Chavez
Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

Jesse Chavez, a Southern California native, was selected by the Texas Rangers in the 42nd round of the 2002 Draft. He bounced around the league a bit, also spending time with the Atlanta Braves, Kansas City Royals and Toronto Blue Jays before settling in with the Oakland Athletics.

Chavez spent four seasons with Oakland, where he finally broke out in 2014. That year, after making just two starts previously in his career, Chavez pitched in 32 games, including 21 starts, while posting a 3.45 ERA.

The right-hander followed that breakout campaign with another solid year in 2015, setting more career highs with 26 starts and 157 innings while producing a 4.18 ERA. However, that offseason, Chavez was sent back to Toronto, where he’d pitched briefly four years earlier.

The 2016 season began on a positive note for Chavez, who allowed just three runs in his first 13 games. However, the 14th appearance would punctuate his season.

Bad blood from the 2015 American League Division Series between the Blue Jays and Rangers spilled over into a game on May 15, and Chavez played a central role.

Chavez was brought in to hold a two-run lead in the seventh inning with two on and two out. He surrendered a go-ahead home run to Ian Desmond. Jose Bautista, who made waves with his legendary bat flip last postseason against Texas, was drilled with the first pitch in the top of the eighth.

Bautista’s hard slide into second base would spur a benches-clearing brawl, in which he caught a Rougned Odor right cross.

Then in the bottom of the eighth, Chavez retaliated by hitting Prince Fielder with a pitch, causing the benches to clear for the second time in the inning. Chavez was ejected from the game and later received a three-game suspension.

He’d make 25 more appearances for the Blue Jays until the Dodgers came calling, sending Mike Bolsinger to Toronto in exchange for his services. Chavez, who grew up in Fontana, was finally home.

He pitched solidly for the Dodgers. In 23 games, Chavez posted a 4.21 ERA, striking out 21 and walking eight. He was not included on either of the club’s postseason rosters.

2016 Highlight

Beginning in just his third appearance with the Dodgers and concluding Aug. 19, Chavez turned in nine scoreless innings with nine strikeouts over six games.

Then over five appearances from Aug. 25-Sept. 2, Chavez threw 5.1 shutout frames.

2017 Outlook

It was unclear whether the Dodgers would bring Chavez back for the 2017 season, but that issue was resolved on Friday when the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim inked the 33-year-old to a one year, $5.75 million deal.

He’s slated to help out a mostly non-existent Angels rotation.

You can listen to Jared on the weekly Dugout Blues Podcast