The Dodgers are getting their starting rotation healthy. But while they wait on Tony Gonsolin to be 100 percent, they will continue to throw bullpen games to fill in the gaps. Just 2 months into a season, that could be a problem.
The Dodgers are burning through some guys in the bullpen pretty heavily early on in the season. Victor Gonzalez and Blake Treinen alone have already pitched in 21 of the 50 games. Part of that is due to a lack of healthy starters after Dustin May went down.
And while Gonsolin is expected to be ready to go within 2 weeks, it’s still odd that the Dodgers would bet all of their money on him. It could make sense for Andrew Friedman and his team to look outside of the organization for help, especially with the uncertainty surrounding top prospect Josiah Gray.
It’s worth noting that while all of these guys could be options, Friedman will never overpay for a luxury.
Pineda is pitching the best year of his career so far in 2021, save for that first year with the Yankees. He’s punching out close to 10 batters per 9 innings and has kept his walk rate in check. The Twins are severely underperforming at 20-29, and many wonder if they will decide to be sellers at the deadline. If they are, the Dodgers could greatly benefit from having him at the end of the rotation. Even if his fastball velocity is down.
Duffy is playing for the Royals who are currently 23-25 and third place in the AL Central. They’re right in that sweet spot of almost being a playoff contender and almost being a deadline seller for the moment. A lot could change over the next 2 months, but he should be available in the final year of his deal. Duffy is set to make $15.5 million in 2021, so he would be the most expensive option of the 3 guys discussed.
He is currently on the injured list with a forearm strain, but the Royals think he avoided any serious injury.
Anderson signed a one-year deal this offseason with the Pirates that only pays him $2.5 million. Finally out of Colorado, Anderson is having a decent year. He’s not a top starter by any means, but he averages just over 5 innings pitched per start. He could eat up innings for the Dodgers and probably won’t cost them much. The Pirates are 18-31 and arguably already out of any sort of contention conversation.
Max Scherzer is in the final year of a $210 million deal that will pay him almost $35 million in 2021. He’s 36-years-old, but Mad Max is still dealing and an ace in most rotations. Could the Dodgers trade for him? Sure, why not. But they won’t. It’s still fun to dream what that rotation would be capable of though.