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From Foe to Friend: Dodgers Sign Ex-Giant Brian Wilson

Wilson hasn't pitched since early 2012.

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Getty Images
    Brian Wilson #38 of the San Francisco Giants pitches in relief against the Colorado Rockies at Coors Field on April 11, 2012, in Denver, Colorado. The Los Angeles Dodgers signed Wilson on Tuesday.

    Turning a foe into a friend, the Dodgers have signed one of the most hated players of the Dodgers-Giants rivalry in recent memory.

    Former San Francisco closer Brian Wilson was a free agent, and the Dodgers scooped him up on Tuesday with a major-league deal that keeps him on the roster for the remainder of the 2013 season.

    It is an interesting signing that appears to be of the low-risk/high-reward variety. Don Mattingly appeared to like the move.

    "It's not costing us any players, and its a guy that had the ball in his hand for the last out of the World Series," the Dodgers manager said.

    Wilson garnered his popularity -- or hatred -- with San Fransisco during their Championship run in 2010 with his loud personality, ridiculous beard and success on the mound. He had 38 saves that season, and pitched 11.2 scoreless innings in the playoffs while the Giants won the World Series, as Mattingly mentioned, with him on the mound.

    In 2012, Wilson went down with Tommy John surgery, and has not pitched since. That creates the biggest question mark in terms of what to expect from Wilson.

    Since he is only signed to the end of the season its gives the team a chance to ditch him if he ends up a bust. And if he doesn't, then the Dodgers have another great arm in the bullpen.

    Really the biggest risk here is if he does well and is rewarded with one of those multi-year deals that Coletti has handed out to Brandon League and Matt Guerrier in the past, and well, we have seen how well those worked out.

    Some worry that Wilson's big personality will have an adverse effect on the clubhouse, but that seems overblown. Mattingly addressed that on Tuesday, saying, "We've got a few characters in there, I'm sure he'll fit right in."

    So there you have it. Brian Wilson, the much-hated ex-Giant, is now a Dodger.

    He has been sent to Arizona to begin his rehab and can be expected on the big league roster in as little as two weeks.

    It will be interesting to see how Dodger fans greet him upon his first appearance at Dodger Stadium, but until then lets see how the Dodgers do in this series against the New York Yankees.

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