Hatcher and Stripling survive final cuts
Adam Liberatore and Josh Fields were optioned to the minors yesterday giving the Dodgers their full pitching staff. Not quite full with Baez headed to the DL.
The pitching staff looks set for the time being, but it won’t be long before changes are made.
Starting Rotation – Kershaw, Maeda, Hill, Ryu, McCarthy
Right-Hand Bullpen – Jansen, Romo, Hatcher, Stripling
Left-Hand Bullpen – Dayton, Avilan, Wood
I am a little surprised that Wood made the team because it would seem the team would be best served to have him work as a starter every day in AAA instead of getting sporadic work in the bullpen. This bullpen has two starters working in it, with Stripling and Wood.
Within a few weeks, Julio Urias will be ready whenever the Dodgers want to call on him if any of the current five falter. Kazmir and his hip will also be lurking.
When Baez is ready to come off the DL, the choices to be replaced would appear to be Ross Stripling or Chris Hatcher. This could be an important April for the future Dodger career of Chris Hatcher.
Liberatore is probably the better pitcher than Avilan but Avilan didn’t have minor league options and Adam did so Adam goes to AAA.
What do you suppose happens to Urias if none of the five falter?
That is a very good question and one the Dodgers would love to have to answer. I would guess they let him pitch in AAA, but I have to think that between Hill / Ryu / McCarthy that things will take care of themselves.
I also think things will take care of themselves. That said, I would not be thrilled with Urias wasting his bullets in AAA…so to speak.
I would rate the SP this way
Kershaw – Best Pitcher In The World
Urias – “Lefty Pedro”, Best Age 20 Pitcher In The World
Maeda – 2016 IP Team Leader, “The Ninja” learns from his rookie MLB experience and builds on it in 2017.
Ryu – Like Maeda, Ryu came to the MLB as a preeminent star in his previous leauge.
I doubted that Ryu would be able to play his way back into the rotation.
Ryu obviously has the mindset of a true champion.
Hill – an overcomer of adversity, he wins and loses by his ability to control his “trick pitch”.
Hill lacks the credentials of a long track record of success as a SP that his team mates Kershaw, Maeda, and Ryu have created.
McCarthy – Can he put one season together for the Dodgers?
Rather than “The Yips”, he may have just been dealing with some tired nerves in his arm , part of the recovery process from his surgery.
So, starting the season, McCarthy and Ryu are question marks regarding their stamina, how will their bodies respond to the long haul of the season?
If they both are able to start every game the Dodgers want them to, they will be on some type of
pitch count/innings limit, it has been a couple of years since either of them has been able to play.
Hill has a history of being slow to get up to speed in the early season.
It makes good sense to have two long guys like Wood and Stripling backing Ryu, McCarthy, and Hill up, especially early in the season, the team will learn more about how the trio of SP are responding in the month of April, when Hill, Ryu, and McCarthy should each get five starts.
Expect Urias in the second week of May. This would take Urias to around 170 IP, including playoff starts.at 6 IP per start.
It doesn’t take too much imagination to conjure scenarios where Urias just has a spot in the rotation waiting for him in mid May.
One of Ryu, McCarthy, or Hill could be experiencing some sort of difficulty at this time.
In the event all of the Dodgers SP are clicking on all cylinders in Mid May, Urias will still be inserted into the rotation. The Dodgers have a plan in place for him. If the pitcher he displaces is healthy the pitcher would then go to the bullpen.
Good stuff Gary, I think you are right on just about all points. I would think if everything is clicking and Brock Stewart is able to pitch in May, they will probably be shopping McCarthy / Kazmir hard if both prove to be healthy.
Does make sense in April having Wood / Stripling in the bullpen because of the lack of work by McCarthy/Ryu. I hadn’t thought of that.
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