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Jonathan Broxton won't pitch again this season; now what?

September 12, 2011 |  8:29 pm


Jonathan Broxton has run out time.

Now what happens to the big right-hander?

In a shock to absolutely no one, Dodgers Manager Don Mattingly on Monday said Broxton would not pitch again this season.

"It just doesn’t seem like he’s advanced far enough," Mattingly said. "He hasn’t thrown off a mound, and that’s going to take awhile once you get to that."

Broxton hasn’t pitched since May 3, when he finally admitted his right elbow was bothering him. He was diagnosed with a bruised elbow. He was scheduled to go out on a rehab assignment in mid-June but he suffered a setback.

The Dodgers were still hoping Broxton could at least get healthy enough to pitch the final two weeks of the season, but now have given up on that. He threw off a mound for the first time since June on Monday.

Broxton has 84 saves over his six-plus seasons with the Dodgers, but lost his job as closer last season after posting a 7.13 earned-run average in the second half.

Mattingly pledged his loyalty to Broxton in the offseason and re-inserted him as the team closer. Broxton had seven saves, several of the shaky variety, and a 5.68 ERA this season before going on the DL.

The 6-foot-4, 300-pound Broxton is 27 years old, too young to call it a career. He earned $7 million this year and will become a free agent at the end of the season.

His future is what might safely be called cloudy. Certainly, he won’t be able to demand a significant contract coming off his recent performance and uncertain healthy.

"I haven’t thought much about that," Mattingly said. "It’s hard to say. I don’t know what he wants to do."

It’s more like what he can do, which could be simply signing with a team in the offseason as a non-roster invitee. Certainly, some team will take a flier on someone who used to light up the radar gun at 100 mph.

Meanwhile, rookie Javy Guerra has unexpectedly emerged as the team closer. Guerra has 18 saves in 19 opportunities.


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Photo: Dodgers reliever Jonathan Broxton during a game at Dodger Stadium earlier this season. Credit: Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times