Originally published by DodgerBlue.com
The Los Angeles Dodgers leaned on Brusdar Graterol over the course of the 2023 season, utilizing the big right-hander in a trusted spot out of their bullpen.
His fourth season with the Dodgers was undoubtedly his best, boasting a 1.20 ERA, 3.03 FIP, 0.97 WHIP and .218 batting average allowed in 68 games (67.1 innings).
Graterol posted a career-high in innings, strikeouts, and in his most-expanded role as a big league pitcher, he allowed just nine earned runs over an entire season.
The 25-year-old finished in the 92nd percentile in expected ERA, 95th percentile in walk-rate, 99th percentile in groundball rate, and nearly eliminated hard contact with a 92nd percentile barrel percentage.
When ahead in the count, Graterol allowed a miniscule 0.26 ERA and a .231/.265/.315 slash line. He was as good on the road as he was at Dodger Stadium, allowing a 1.08 ERA away from Chavez Ravine.
Graterol was able to avoid the injured list for the entire 2023 season, but he did miss some time while on the paternity list early in the year.
Brusdar Graterol 2023 highlight
In his best season in MLB, Graterol had his most dominant run in 2023 from July 1 through the end of the regular season. The right-hander allowed just one run in his final 32.1 innings pitched to close out the year.
Graterol posted a 0.28 ERA, 3.10 FIP, 0.71 WHIP and a .151 batting average allowed. In that span, he stranded every runner to reach base.
An honorable mention also goes out to Brusdar’s mom, Ysmalia, who fired a gem of a first pitch that spread across social media. Her dart of a toss rivaled that of ESPN personality Stephen A. Smith, who short-hopped his throw, proclaiming online that he threw a changeup.
Ysmalia, who lives in Venezuela, flew to Los Angeles and got to watch her son pitch in a Major League game for the first time, creating an emotional reunion between the two. “We’ve been working on this for seven years,” Graterol explained at the time.
Graterol was overcome with emotions when coming out of the bullpen and walking off the mound.
Graterol and the Dodgers avoided arbitration in early January, agreeing on a contract for the 2024 season worth $2.7 million, a shade above projections. He’s under contract through the 2027 season with two Minor League options remaining.
Graterol figures to be a big part of the Dodgers’ bullpen once again, providing the team with another high-leverage option to pair with Evan Phillips at the backend of their bullpen.
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