Only a week remains before the Los Angeles Dodgers start their 2014 season in Australia against the Arizona Diamondbacks. The roster will be comprised of 30 players, three who’ll be exempt and won’t play, but will be activated prior to the March 30 North American opener in San Diego.
When it comes to starting pitching, injuries have been a huge factor in deciding who will and won’t be traveling with the team. Zack Greinke is out due to a mild right calf strain suffered in his first spring training start and manager Don Mattingly decided to go with Clayton Kershaw and Hyun-Jin Ryu as his Australia starters.
Dan Haren has been dealing with a tired arm and won’t be making the trip via J.P. Hoornstra of the Los Angeles Daily News:
Dan Haren is not going to Sydney, Mattingly said. Paul Maholm is.
— J.P. Hoornstra (@jphoornstra) March 15, 2014
While Paul Maholm will be making the trip, he’s nothing more than the emergency starter and would see action if Kershaw or Ryu aren’t stretched out enough. The 31-year-old left-hander signed a one-year deal this off-season and was set to compete against Josh Beckett for the fifth spot in the starting rotation.
This spring, Maholm has started three games, but his latest start this week against the Cincinnati Reds didn’t go to plan. Maholm could also pitch in the Dodgers exhibition game against Team Australia, but it figures to be a minor leaguer brought over for those duties. While Haren is dealing with a “tired arm”, the Dodgers are in the “dead zone” of Spring Training and don’t seem to be too worried.
Haren will stay back at Camelback Ranch and presumably take part in simulated games or minor league games as he prepares for the Dodgers North American portion of the schedule.
ICYMI: Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw is honored to pitch Game 1 in Australia with the Dodgers