Brandon Morrow is a free agent, and some intriguing possibilities await him over the coming weeks. He's fresh off an impressive season in the Los Angeles Dodgers' bullpen, followed by a historic postseason that has awakened teams to the possibility that he could be closer material in 2018. As Morrow recovers from his role as Los Angeles' October workhorse, the internet speculation and offseason projections drive home the realization that he has gone from a hot stove afterthought to a hot commodity. It's a humbling and somewhat startling development. In December 2014, Morrow signed a $2.5 million contract with the San Diego Padres only to suffer a season-ending shoulder injury after five starts. The Padres re-signed him to a minor league deal in 2015, and this year Morrow lingered on the market until January before agreeing to a minor league contract with Los Angeles. The Dodgers didn't summon him from Triple-A Oklahoma City until May 29, just days before an opt-out clause in his contract would have gone into effect. Once Morrow arrived, he had a major impact. In 45 relief appearances, he recorded a 0.92 WHIP, 2.06 ERA and .194 batting average against while striking out 50 batters in 43 2/3 innings. Morrow logged a 15.9 percent swinging-strike percentage -- higher than Wade Davis (15.5), Sean Doolittle (15.4), Greg Holland (15.3) and Cody Allen (14.9), among other prominent back-end guys. Now he gets to enjoy the fruits of his success. Along with Davis and Holland, he's one of the top three relief options on the market this winter. "This will be my fourth year in a row being a free agent,'' Morrow said by phone this week. "But it's been two minor league contracts and sort of a 'pillow' deal in San Diego, so that's not exactly the same. There weren't a lot of teams knocking on my door. Hopefully, there will be some teams calling me in the first week this year.'' Morrow emerged as Kenley Jansen's principal wingman in Los Angeles during the stretch drive and made news for his durability in October, tying Cleveland's Paul Assenmacher with 14 appearances in a single postseason and joining Darold Knowles of the 1973 Oakland A's as the second pitcher to appear in all seven games of a World Series.
How Brandon Morrow went from hot stove afterthought to hot commodity
ESPN | Nov 11