The Dodgers have been busy Saturday.
First Ted Lilly and Ryan Theriot, now reliever Octavio Dotel has been added to the bullpen corps. For Dotel and $500,000, the Pirates swoop in and get starter James McDonald and top prospect Andrew Lambo.
Dotel has closed for the Pirates all season, posting a 4.28 ERA in 40 innings. He's punched out 48 batters, matching his whiff rate from 2009. His walk rate of 3.8 batters per nine is his lowest since 2007 and should be a force for the Dodgers in the back of the bullpen. Even better than the fact the Dodgers are getting $500,000 to help cover Dotel's deal is that Los Angeles holds a $4.5 million club option that can be exercised for 2011.
The negative comes in the return -- McDonald and Lambo is quite a bit to give up for an old reliever who can give maybe 20 innings the rest of the season.
McDonald posted an even 4.00 ERA over 63 innings in 2009, starting four games and relieving in 41. In a small sample size of 7 2/3 innings in the bigs this season, he has a 8.22 ERA. Rated the No. 56 prospect by Baseball America prior to 2009, McDonald has a 4.41 ERA in 12 starts for the Triple-A club as a 25-year-old.
He can give the Pirates some solid innings out of the rotation, although his future may be in relief where he could emerge as a late-inning weapon.
Lambo was ranked as the No. 7 prospect in the Dodgers' farm system heading into 2010 and is hitting .271/.325/.420 in 198 plate appearances with four home runs. The 21-year-old is primarily a left-fielder and has a chance to develop into an average or above-average regular for Pittsburgh. All in all, a great return for someone meaningless to the Pirates.
-- Evan Brunell
For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter.