With Hyun-jin Ryu beginning the season on the disabled list, the Los Angeles Dodgers had just four starting pitchers on the 25-man active roster come Opening Day. While they normally would have kept a designated starter up rather than optioning said player to the Minors, off days built into the schedule didn’t require that to be the case.
When the Dodgers did need a fifth starter, they called up David Huff, who was a non-roster invite for Spring Training, and optioned Darwin Barney to Triple-A Oklahoma City. That spot on the active roster has since led to Carlos Frias and now Adam Liberatore joining the team from Oklahoma City.
The schedule dictates the Dodgers next need a fifth starter April 25 for the second of a three-game weekend series against the Padres in San Diego. However, Dodgers manager Don Mattingly said prior to Saturday’s game he was giving thought adjusting the rotation prior to the April game.
“We are looking at it and kind of where we want to do that,” Mattingly said. “The fact that we haven’t been able to take advantage of the off days for our four guys that are posting up all the time, we’re talking about trying to slot someone in possibly earlier to make sure these guys are all getting that extra day before we get into that stretch in May that’s pretty tight.”
By Sunday, the fifth-year manager arrived at a decision and announced Brett Anderson would start Tuesday and Clayton Kershaw on Wednesday. Tim Lincecum is scheduled to face Anderson and Madison Bumgarner is slated for Wednesday’s game, which will add another layer to the growing Bumgarner-Kershaw rivalry.
Mattingly stopped short of naming Zack Greinke the starter for the series finale, a matinee game on Thursday, which suggests that may be when the Dodgers slide in a Minor-League pitcher.
Greinke would then be pushed back to Friday’s game — the opener against the Padres. Conceivable Triple-A options to fill in for a spot start include Mike Bolsinger and Zach Lee. Joe Wieland presumably was also a candidate, but he started Oklahoma City’s game on Sunday.
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