MLB Insider connects Orioles to breakout reliever in free agency

The Orioles might be looking to add another bullpen arm

Sep 21, 2023; Los Angeles, California, USA;  Los Angeles Dodgers relief pitcher Ryan Brasier (57) delivers a pitch during a game against the San Francisco Giants
Sep 21, 2023; Los Angeles, California, USA; Los Angeles Dodgers relief pitcher Ryan Brasier (57) delivers a pitch during a game against the San Francisco Giants / Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports
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With all the talk recently about which starting pitchers the Orioles might be in on and which ones they're likely out on, they appeared in the relief pitching market again on Friday.

Jon Heyman of MLB Network and the New York Post reported that the Orioles were one of six teams in the market for relief pitcher Ryan Brasier, who ended 2023 as one of baseball's best relievers after joining the Los Angeles Dodgers. The Chicago Cubs, Los Angeles Angels and Dodgers, St. Louis Cardinals, and Texas Rangers were the other five teams named by Heyman.

Orioles appear in free agent reliever market with reported interest in Ryan Brasier

After a rough 2022 season that saw him end the year with a 5.78 ERA and 1.299 WHIP, Brasier started 2023 even worse with the Boston Red Sox, allowing 18 runs in 21 innings for a 7.29 ERA and 1.571 WHIP that led to him getting DFA'd and released after he went unclaimed on waivers.

He then signed a minor-league deal with the Dodgers and was called up to the big club not long after. That was when he took off. He posted a 0.70 ERA and 0.724 WHIP, striking out 38 hitters and allowing just one home run in 38 2/3 innings over 39 appearances. He allowed one run in 2 1/3 innings in the playoffs.

This stretch, while incredible, didn't come completely out of nowhere for Brasier, as he had a 1.60 ERA over 34 appearances with Boston in 2018 and was their best reliever down the stretch in 2021, posting a 1.50 ERA in 13 appearances after missing a large portion of the season due to multiple injuries before making his debut in September.

Brasier's run with the Dodgers dropped his season ERA down to 3.02 and his WHIP to 1.022 over 59 appearances and 59 2/3 innings. His 95th percentile ranking in barrel percentage and 83rd percentile ranking in extension were his best advanced metric marks, ranking in the 80th percentile in pitching run value in 2023. Simply put, he was dominant once he joined the Dodgers.

While the Orioles looking at adding another reliever is a little surprising considering they have a temporary closer in Craig Kimbrel and have lots of options for the bullpen, adding a breakout player like Brasier would only solidify the pen more and with better options, and at a cheaper cost than some of the relievers still left on the market. There shouldn't be a lot of complaints if Brasier joins the Orioles.

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