According to sources, former National League Cy Young award winner Eric Gagne has decided to return to the team that lifted him to the top of the baseball world in his prime. Eric Gagne has reportedly signed a $500,000 contract with the Los Angeles Dodgers. It is a minor league deal, but with Spring Training coming up he could earn a spot on the team's major league roster.
The former Los Angeles Dodgers closer could earn up to $1MM, with $500,000 in performance bonuses.
In 2003, Eric Gagne put on a stellar performance with the Dodgers. In that season, he converted 55 of 55 saves. That incredible season put him on top of the baseball world and established him as one of the league's dominant closers. It seemed like the Dodgers and Gagne would be unstoppable in the ninth inning for years to come.
Things derailed for Gagne after he left Chavez Ravine. He had a short stint with the Rangers. That stint ended as he was traded to the Red Sox and put up decent numbers as one of the Red Sox relievers in 2007. The Red Sox refused to re-sign him for another year afterwards.
It looked like there wasn't much gas left in the tank for Gagne. He played in 2008 for the Milwaukee Brewers. In 2008, he only saved 10 games for the Brew Crew and when that season ended, he vanished from the baseball spotlight.
He spent 2009 playing for a baseball team in an independent league.
Many teams refused to sign Gagne because of his name's appearance in the Mitchell Report. The report stated that he received Human Growth Hormone in 2004.
But now the Los Angeles Dodgers have gone out on a limb and decided to give their former star a second chance. Eric Gagne could compete for a bullpen role with the Dodgers, because his chances of winning the closer job are slim to none. The Dodgers are set with George Sherrill and Jonathan Broxton at the back end of that bullpen.
Fans can only wait and see what Gagne has left in the tank and if it can help or hurt the Dodgers.