The Dodgers look like they are very close to getting their Opening Day roster locked in. While Dave Roberts does still need to figure out his bench and bullpen, everything else appears to be locked in with less than two weeks until first pitch in Colorado.
One of the key components for Roberts to figure out was the starting rotation. They had plenty of names in contention for the job, but the back-end of the rotation could have been filled out several different ways. But we now know what that rotation will look like.
Speaking to the media on Sunday afternoon, Roberts announced what the rotation would look like for the Dodgers. Obviously, it will be headlined by Clayton Kershaw, Walker Buehler, and Julio Urias. But Doc also added that Andrew Heaney and Tony Gonsolin would be the two guys to fill out the final spots.
Some rotation updates from Dave Roberts:
Tony Gonsolin is projected to be the fifth starter to open the season (along with Buehler, Kershaw, Urías and Heaney). Tyler Anderson likely a multi-inning guy out of bullpen. David Price's role is TBD right now bc he's not built up yet
— Jack Harris (@Jack_A_Harris) March 27, 2022
The Gonsolin move makes sense, especially given how much he appears to have gotten his control issues dialed in. When he’s on, Gonsolin can be a very good starter and proved that in his 2020 campaign. But issues with walks really tore through his 2021 season, and that resulted in a demotion to the bullpen.
The most questionable part by far though is Andrew Heaney. The Dodgers signed him to an $8.5 million deal this offseason with hopes that he could find his form in Los Angeles, Early on though, he looks to have even lost some of his good stuff. Heaney has been rocked for 10 runs across his two Spring Training appearances so far.
Relying on him to bounce back is a tough look, but David Price and Tyler Anderson are not built up enough. But from what it sounds like, the plan is for Anderson to take down multiple innings, possibly in a piggy-back role to start out the year. That helps current starters build up through the first month.