While Joe Torre's future with the Dodgers is still uncertain, he told the press that he would recommend bringing starter Vicente Padilla back next season, according to Richard Dean in a piece for MLB.com.
"When we got him about a year ago, there were so many stories that followed him," said the 70-year-old skipper. "But he's been a good teammate. I don't think there's anybody who doesn't like what he does. It's tough to find stuff like he has. When he gets out there he can still do it. He knows what he's doing. He has not been a [negative] issue baseball-wise. I like him."
Padilla hooked on with the Dodgers with two months remaining in 2009 and re-upped with the club over the winter, signing a one-year, $5.025MM deal. The soon-to-be 33-year-old was released by Texas who reportedly considered him to be a bad teammate. Torre's backing suggests that there has been no such issue in Los Angeles.
The righthander missed a great deal of time in 2010, turning in just 16 starts. In 95 innings of work, he registered a 4.07 ERA with 8.0 K/9 and 2.3 BB/9, numbers that are a step above his career averages. Padilla was scheduled to return to action yesterday, giving him a chance to audition himself, but will instead be shut down for the year due to a neck injury. He will be joined in free agency by fellow Dodgers starters Hiroki Kuroda and Ted Lilly.