The Dodgers acquired right-handed reliever J.P. Feyereisen in a trade with the Tampa Bay Rays on Wednesday morning, according to a person with knowledge of the situation who wasn’t authorized to speak publicly.
Feyereisen, 29, was designated for assignment by the Rays on Tuesday after undergoing surgery last week to repair the rotator cuff and labrum in his right shoulder. According to the Tampa Bay Times, the Rays expected the procedure to shut down Feyereisen from throwing for four months, meaning he likely won’t be available to pitch for the Dodgers until at least after the All-Star break.
In return, the Dodgers are sending the Rays minor-league pitcher Jeff Belge.
Although they won’t get a full season out of Feyereisen, the Dodgers will be hoping the fourth-year big-leaguer can replicate his impressive 2022 performance whenever he is healthy enough to take the mound again.
After posting a 2.73 ERA in 2021 with the Rays and Milwaukee Brewers — Feyereisen was part of the deal that sent shortstop Willy Adames to the Brewers that season — Feyereisen gave up just one unearned run in 24 ⅓ innings in last year, an unblemished ERA that was keyed by a 25-to-five strikeout-to-walk ratio and .086 batting average against.
Feyereisen’s fastball only averages 92-93 mph, but it has a high spin rate capable of consistently generating strikeouts. His two breaking balls, a slider and a changeup, have also been effective swing-and-miss pitches for the former 16th-round draft pick, who had one of the highest whiff rates in the majors during his last full season in 2021, according to Baseball Savant.
With the Dodgers, Feyereisen will be expected to give the Dodgers bullpen depth during the second half of the season.
While the club still considers its relievers a strength following their productive group effort last season, the Dodgers have lost a couple key arms this winter after Chris Martin signed with the Boston Red Sox and Tommy Kahnle signed with the New York Yankees. Blake Treinen is also expected to miss most, if not all, of 2023 after undergoing his own labrum and rotator cuff repair surgery this offseason.
Feyereisen will also be under team control through the 2026 season, and isn’t eligible for arbitration until 2024.