Julio Urias’ Dodgers timeline has been an odd one. The emphasis on managing the 20-year-old’s innings has clouded his MLB situation, though Dave Roberts may have provided some clarity.
Urias pitched 3.2 innings in his Oklahoma City start on Monday, allowing two runs on 79 pitches. It was notable that Urias threw so many pitches, but Roberts downplayed any concern. Andrew Friedman added Urias threw roughly the amount they anticipated (75).
— O.C. Register (@ocregister) April 11, 2017
“He’s close,” Roberts said of Urias. “I think we’ll try to pick our spots and use him accordingly and when we do need him he’ll be ready. But we’re not ready to say when that day is going to be. Some time at the end of the month makes sense.”
Urias is the crown jewel of the Dodgers system. He was signed as a 16-year-old out of Mexico, and progressed through the minors at a rapid rate. Urias was on a 27-inning scoreless streak before his promotion to face the New York Mets last season.
Projecting as a future ace, Urias possesses an arsenal far advanced for his age. His repertoire consists of curveball, changeup, slider and sinker to complement his fourseamer. He’s assembled more usable pitches before turning 21 than some do their entire careers.
A player with such an array of weapons who throws as hard and with as much movement as Urias does is rare. As such, the Dodgers are cautious with his development. But it appears he may be back in Los Angeles sooner than many believed.