In 2020, David Worth famously got here to the Dodgers within the Jeter Downs commerce from Boston, on a seven-year $217-million contract, for which Boston paid half. 2022 was the final yr of this contract. In 2022, Worth represented that rarity in baseball: the outdated man in a occupation of the younger. Worth was strong however not spectacular in 2022, normally showing a few occasions per week to offer bridge protection to high-leverage arms like Evan Phillips.
Since coming over from Boston, even with accidents to the beginning employees, Worth has basically been penciled in as a reliever. Worth was not seen as an choice to return to the rotation, seemingly content material to let youthful pitchers like Tyler Anderson and Mitch White have their alternatives. As Worth instructed Invoice Plunkett of the Orange County Register in June:
“I like these younger guys getting their begins,” mentioned Worth, who [had] a 3.38 ERA in 18 aid appearances, principally in low-leverage conditions. “I like them with the ability to get their numbers up to allow them to go to arbitration they usually can get their cash. I acquired mine.
“I like seeing these younger guys go on the market and attempt to set up themselves. I really like watching Mitch White pitch. He’s acquired good things. That’s what he wants. He must pitch within the large leagues, not pitch in Triple-A. That’s a waste of time. He must be within the large leagues pitching.”
Whereas with the Dodgers, Worth was the exemplar of a singular motto pitching: he’s giving it every little thing he’s acquired. Frankly, I’m stunned that the nickname “Scotty” was not used for Worth, which looks like a missed alternative on reflection.
However whereas he gave all of it he had, sporadic stints on the injured listing whereas being content material with what he was in a position to give had been the themes of his possible remaining season with the Dodgers. Worth made 40 appearances within the 2022 season, of which 34 of them had been for an inning or extra (however by no means two, topping out at 1⅔ innings 3 times).
Worth began his yr within the Dodgers bullpen, showing for the primary time on a freezing wet night time in Minneapolis on April 12. Worth made 5 appearances earlier than occurring the injured listing on April 24 for testing optimistic for COVID-19 — after spending the previous two years making an attempt to keep away from the virus, going so far as opting out of play in 2020.
A couple of month later, on Might 17, Worth was activated and made one other 14 appearances, principally showing in center aid. On the finish of June, Worth had pitched 19⅔ innings with a 3.20 ERA and 24 strikeouts. On June 30, Worth was positioned on the household emergency listing.
On July 3, Worth returned to energetic responsibility, ending the Ian Gibaut period. Round this time, Worth spoke with Plunkett of The Orange County Register seemingly confirming the extensively recognized perception that Worth would retire on the finish of his present contract. Worth would make 19 further appearances by means of the top of August, once more, primarily in center aid.
On September 4, Worth returned to the injured listing with left wrist irritation and missed a lot of the month of September. Worth returned to the energetic roster on September 29, a transfer that was missed as a result of Yency Almonte was additionally activated on the identical day. That night time, Worth earned his second save of the yr within the common season finale towards the Padres, with some commentary from Joe Davis that didn’t age properly in any respect.
Worth’s remaining look in 2022 was the next night time in Los Angeles: a scoreless inning of labor in a 10-1 drubbing of Colorado. Worth was left off the postseason roster.
Whereas Worth has not formally declared he’ll retire and denied stories that he was going to retire in mid-September, At occasions like these, it’s straightforward to neglect the pedigree that made Worth price such a large contract all these years in the past: the primary total choose within the 2007 draft, 5 All-Star Video games (2010-12, 2014, 2015), a Cy Younger in 2012 (plus two different second-place finishes), the AL Comeback Participant of the 12 months in 2018, and a World Collection ring with Boston in 2018.
Worth’s tenure with the Dodgers has possible come to an finish. I used to be lucky sufficient to see David Worth in particular person 5 occasions in 2022. It was fascinating to look at this skilled work. Most gamers would lack the self-awareness to come back to phrases with their restricted window to play in skilled baseball. Nonetheless, Worth all the time carried out himself as knowledgeable and was by no means something apart from a very good teammate.
To conclude this evaluate, as soon as once more, Plunkett’s dialog with Worth on June 29:
…Worth mentioned he can stroll away glad that he has completed every little thing he needed to within the sport – properly, virtually every little thing.
“Completely – apart from profitable a Silver Slugger,” mentioned the profession .123 hitter, once more with a hearty chuckle.
Stats: 2-0, 2 saves, 2.45 ERA, 3.83 xERA, 3.88 FIP, 40 G, 40⅓ IP, 9 BB, 37 Ok, 1.165 WHIP
Wage: $32 million (Dodgers had been chargeable for $16 million)
Recreation of the yr
Choosing a sport of the yr for a low-leverage reliever is difficult, however we are going to go together with August 5 at residence towards the Padres the place he recorded 5 outs and struck out three batters, matching his season highs for strikeouts and outing size for the yr.
Worth is a free agent and has not formally declared his intention to retire as of this essay.
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