Dodgers part ways with former Yankee Lance Lynn

Former player of the New York Yankees, Lance Lynn

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In a surprising move, the Los Angeles Dodgers have chosen to part ways with former New York Yankees pitcher, Lance Lynn, by declining the hefty $18 million club option on his contract. Instead, they opted to give him a $1 million buyout. This news was reported by Fabian Ardaya of The Athletic, marking the end of Lynn’s tenure with the Dodgers and making him a free agent for the upcoming season.

Lynn’s rollercoaster journey to free agency

Lynn’s journey to free agency has been far from smooth, with his recent stint in the 2023 season plagued by struggles and inconsistencies. The 36-year-old right-handed pitcher had initially joined the Chicago White Sox, but his performance during the early part of the season left much to be desired. His record stood at an underwhelming 6-9, accompanied by a staggering 6.47 ERA, further cementing his status as a major disappointment for the White Sox.

However, the Dodgers saw potential in Lynn and acquired him, alongside reliever Joe Kelly, in a trade deal with the White Sox. This exchange involved the Dodgers parting ways with outfielder Trayce Thompson and two minor league prospects. While Lynn’s performance improved somewhat during his time in Los Angeles, it wasn’t enough to secure his spot on the team. He managed a 7-2 record with a 4.36 ERA, showcasing a more respectable but still less-than-stellar performance.

Disappointingly, Lynn’s promising regular season performance didn’t carry over to the postseason. In the National League Division Series (NLDS), Lynn was given the responsibility of starting Game 3. Unfortunately, his outing was nothing short of a disaster as he allowed four solo home runs in just 2 2/3 innings. The Diamondbacks managed to sweep the Dodgers in the series, resulting in an early postseason exit for the team. This underwhelming playoff performance further highlighted Lynn’s struggles, raising questions about his future with the franchise.

Lynn’s career-worst season

To make matters worse, Lynn’s 2023 season turned out to be the worst of his career, surpassing even his brief stint with the New York Yankees. In 32 starts, his ERA ballooned to a career-worst 5.76, and he allowed 9.8 hits per nine innings, another career low. Lynn’s issues with giving up home runs were particularly problematic, as he allowed 44 long balls during the season, more than he had surrendered in the previous two seasons combined (37).

Not only did Lynn face challenges on the field, but he also encountered some controversy off it. During a game in June, he publicly criticized Angels shortstop Andrew Velazquez, who had previously played as an infielder for the New York Yankees. Velazquez had attempted a bunt against Lynn, and the pitcher expressed his disapproval, stating, “Yeah. I don’t like it. Why? Grown man, swing the bat. He tried it again, too. That was embarrassing. Some people search for hits.”

With his contract option declined by the Dodgers and his rocky 2023 season, Lance Lynn finds himself in the position of seeking a new contract, potentially with a new team, as the winter offseason approaches. His future in Major League Baseball remains uncertain, but his experience and potential may still attract suitors in the free agency market. Lynn’s journey from being a high-potential pitcher to a free agent serves as a cautionary tale of the unpredictability and challenges that professional athletes face in their careers.

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