It would be easy to imagine that former Oakland A’s reliever Ryan Dull had quietly retired.
He has not been in the majors since 2019, a disastrous year that saw him spend time with four different organizations. While he did return to affiliated ball for a few months with the Mariners Triple-A squad, he struggled once again and was unable to return to the majors before being released. One could understand if Dull decided that was enough.
Former Oakland A’s reliever Ryan Dull still trying to rediscover his form
But that is not the case. Dull spent the 2022 season with the High Point Rockers in the independent Atlantic League before heading to the Dominican Winter League. However, he struggled in his four outings with the Leones del Escogido, allowing two runs on three hits and five walks over his 2.1 innings while striking out three batters.
There was a time when Dull seemed like he would be a key part of the A’s bullpen. He was their most frequently used reliever back in 2016, answering the bell virtually every time. Dull posted an excellent 2.42 ERA and a 0.874 WHiP over his 74.1 innings, striking out 73 batters with 15 walks. While he was unable to replicate that success in subsequent years, he was a solid enough middle reliever in Oakland.
Everything fell apart in 2019. He posted a 12.79 ERA and a 2.526 WHiP over his 12.2 innings with three major league teams, striking out 15 batters with seven walks. He was hit hard in that time, allowing 25 hits with five homers as opponents posted a .410/.471/.820 batting line against him in 71 plate appearances.
But Dull is still toiling away, hoping for another chance. He has been solid for the Rockers over the past two seasons and it would not be a surprise if he returned to High Point again next year. If he can put together another strong season, maybe he can get that chance to show he can still be a major league asset.
Former Oakland A’s reliever Ryan Dull is still trying to rediscover his form. His long journey to do just that is not over quite yet.