The Dodgers have only some body of workers decisions to make for the National League Division Series, and with the roster no longer due till Tuesday morning, they’ve earned the proper to take their time.
“We’re fortunate we get the weekend to kind of take it all in and figure it out,” Andrew Friedman advised journalists at Dodger Stadium Friday. “I think we’re savoring this weekend more after what we went through last year.”
Last season noticed the Dodgers vie for the department till the final day of the common season, most effective to settle for 106 wins in 2nd position and a date in the wild card sport sooner than taking part in San Francisco in the NLDS. Los Angeles didn’t have house box benefit closing 12 months excluding in the wild card sport, however this 12 months each Dodgers sequence will start with two video games at Dodger Stadium.
In the first 12 months of a 12-team playoff layout ushered in with the new collective bargaining settlement, the most sensible two seeds in every league get a bye without delay into the NLDS, which this 12 months comes with 5 days off between the common season and Game 1 of the playoffs.
The Dodgers are the use of that point to judge a trio of injured regulars. Chris Taylor overlooked the final 5 video games of the common season with neck stiffness and had a cortisone shot closing Monday, however in reputedly each interview since, Dave Roberts has hinted that although Taylor would most effective be in a position for a part of the Division Series he’d nonetheless make the roster. So let’s believe him a lock.
On the pitching aspect, Dustin May is operating his long ago from decrease again soreness that sidelined him for the final two weeks of the common season. If he’s in a position — after making most effective six main league begins this season since coming back from Tommy John surgical treatment — May is most likely in the Tony Gonsolin zone of no longer but absolutely stretched out, and at maximum can be a three- or four-inning candidate all the way through the NLDS.
Blake Treinen most effective pitched in 5 video games this season, first lacking 4 and a part months with a torn scapula in his proper shoulder. Then after pitching two times in September landed again on the injured listing with extra shoulder soreness. He closing pitched in a sport on September 5.
If May or Treinen are deemed wholesome sufficient, they’ll most likely be lively for the NLDS. But whose spots would they take?
Julio Urías and Clayton Kershaw will get started the first two video games — Dave Roberts mentioned each pitchers know which sport, however that hasn’t but been publicly printed (Bill Plunkett has extra at the Orange County Register) — with Tyler Anderson and Tony Gonsolin after that.
In the bullpen, Evan Phillips, Chris Martin, Tommy Kahnle, Yency Almonte, Alex Vesia, and Brusdar Graterol have all pitched common in high-leverage scenarios, which provides us ten pitchers. Andrew Heaney pitched bulk outings in reduction in his closing two instances out, and is wanted in case Gonsolin is restricted, in order that makes 11.
If each May and Treinen are wholesome, there are your 13 pitchers. If no longer, you will have Caleb Ferguson if the Dodgers need any other left-hander (or David Price, despite the fact that he didn’t pitch in any of the closing 5 common season video games), and deposed nearer Craig Kimbrel from the proper aspect. Left-handers hit .261/.354/.423 towards Kimbrel this 12 months.
On the place participant aspect, assuming Taylor is lively there are a dozen locks, as we’ve mentioned all 12 months. Since the get started of September, ten avid gamers began no less than 20 video games, plus Gavin Lux, who overlooked two weeks with a neck damage and began 14 video games, and again catcher Austin Barnes and his 13 begins. They are the roster locks.
The resolution comes right down to Hanser Alberto or Miguel Vargas. Both haven’t hit a lot despite the fact that in restricted responsibility. Pitching exploits apart, Alberto brings defensive versatility in the infield, despite the fact that with Taylor and Lux each wholesome, Alberto turns into nearly redundant.
Vargas is one in every of the Dodgers’ highest hitting possibilities, so his inclusion on the roster can be a display of religion in case the Dodgers want some further thump overdue in a sport or two.
This isn’t a really perfect method to pass judgement on how a postseason resolution may well be made, however since the get started of September, Vargas has performed greater than Alberto.
Since September 1
Vargas: 16 video games, 9 begins, 42 plate appearances
Alberto: 12 video games, 6 begins, 28 plate appearances
Since Lux returned after lacking two weeks along with his personal neck damage, the hole in taking part in time between Vargas (six begins, 25 PA) and Alberto (3 begins, 14 PA), despite the fact that the majority of that got here after the Dodgers already clinched a bye into the NLDS, so take with a grain of salt.