The Dodgers long season of bullpen issues experienced yet another setback this week. Power right-hander Josh Fields will go on the 10-day disabled list with right shoulder inflammation. The Dodgers are already without several of their key relievers early in the season.
.@buehlersdayoff is being activated today instead of pitching a rehab assignment. He’ll be available out of the pen. He’ll get a clean inning when he comes in. Josh Fields on DL with right shoulder inflammation.
— Alanna Rizzo (@alannarizzo) June 28, 2018
The news of the day yesterday was that Walker Buehler was returning much earlier than anyone had expected. That initially provided a little boost for a bullpen that had seen a number of its members go down. That boost faded pretty quickly on Thursday afternoon. Buehler came in and allowed five earned runs on a number of hard-hit balls in the Dodgers blowout loss to Chicago.
Fields had been quietly having an efficient season with Los Angeles. Despite being susceptible to the long-ball, Fields had pitched to a 2.36 earned run average across 37 appearances. The sheer number of innings he has had to log as a reliever likely contributed to the shoulder inflammation. Feilds ranks near the top of the National League in the number of relief appearances.
That now puts Fields, Pedro Baez, Tony Cingrani, and Tom Koehler out for the time being. It was anticipated that those four would make up the majority of the bullpen all season long.
The good news is that Kenley Jansen seems to be healthy. Other than that, the bullpen seems to have question marks all over it. I would certainly expect the front office to make a move for a reliever before the trade deadline hits this year.
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