The Los Angeles Dodgers traded John Ely to the Houston Astros for former Pasadena Poly High School and UCLA star Rob Rasmussen.
As a native of Arcadia, left-handed pitcher Rasmussen, 23, was drafted by the Dodgers in the 27th round of the 2007 amateur draft, but he chose to go to UCLA instead. In 2010, the Florida Marlins selected him in the 2nd round of the 2010 draft.
He was then traded to the Houston Astros with Matt Dominguez in 2012 for Carlos Lee.
In a minor league career that has spanned three season, Rasmussen us 20-21 and has an Earned Run Average of 3.88 in 60 career games. Last season he finished 4-4 with an Earned Run Average of 4.80 in 11 games for Double-A Corpus Christi.
While he was with the Bruins he was in the rotation with top prospects Gerrit Cole and Trevor Bauer so he was often under the radar. Together, they were part of a duo of NCAA regional teams in 2008 and 2010, and helped lead the Bruins tot he College World Series in 1997, where he tosses a two-hitter against Cal State Fullerton. That season he struck out 128 batters in 109.3 innings while compiling an impressive 11-3 record.
Entering the 2012 season, Baseball America ranked Rasmussen as the seventh best prospect in the Astros organization and said he has the best slider in their system. His fastball tops at in the low-to-mid nineties but he still needs to work to better his command and projects to be a middle reliever with the potential to be used as an emergency spot starter.
John Ely, 26, was the pitcher of the year last year in the Pacific Coast League while pitching most of the season for Triple-A Albuquerque. He had a record of 14-7 last season with the Isotopes and had an Earned Run Average of 3.29 in 27 starts.
However, in his few brief stints in the majors, he hasn’t proved he had what it takes to pitch at the pro level for the Dodgers. He has a career record in the big leagues of 4-13 with an Earned Run Average of 5.70 in 19 starts and six relief appearances over the last three years.
Rob Rasmussen is excited to join the Dodgers organization. This afternoon he tweeted ,”Speechless/incredibly excited to be a Dodger, truly a dream come true!”
Six hours later, the excitement was still there when he tweeted, “For a kid who lived 10 minutes from the stadium, and saw the likes of Piazza and Nomo, I couldn’t be happier then I’ve been all day today.”
I can’t speak for the rest of the Dodger faithful, but personally, I am glad to see the enthusiasm that Rob Rasmussen is showing and look forward to watching him move up in the Dodgers organization. Welcome to Dodgertown, Mr. Rasmussen.