There is no doubt that both the Dodgers value signings of Chris Capuano and Aaron Harang provide some upside. In pitcher-friendly Dodger Stadium both hurlers could win 15 games in rounding out 2/5th of their rotation. I do have to question their decision to let Hiroki Kuroda walk, while investing $11 million in two pitchers that are health risks.
Capuano had a decent season with the Mets, but typical was good for 5 innings or 80 pitches, whichever came first. I don’t think that performance is worth $5 million dollars a year. Harang is a former top-of-the-rotation arm whose career has been killed by injuries. His number outside of Petco Park (4.70 ERA) were wildly mediocre.
Kuroda would probably command slightly more than Capuano/Harang combined (estimated $12 million), for the same two years. Ned Colletti could then round out his rotation by bringing in a value signing (which Capuano was with the Mets last year) such as Jason Marquis for a low base plus incentives.
If the Dodgers weren’t in bankruptcy, I would have assumed they were on a strict budget that made such a plan prohibitive. However, it’s clear they are allowed to spend as a new owner should be in place by the beginning of the 2012 season.
In my opinion, the Dodgers signed two very good, yet mediocre pitchers, instead of a top of the rotation arm in Kuroda and a low risk/high reward arm like Marquis.