Kenta Maeda ended a long skid of tough starts on Saturday night by throwing 7 shutout innings to help give the Los Angeles Dodgers a win. Still, his status for the October playoff roster is up in the air until the Dodgers proclaim one way or another what his role will be.
Now, Dave Roberts is being diplomatic in talking about that subject to Bill Plunkett of the OC Register. However, it seems that Maeda could be on the outside-looking-in when the leaves begin to turn color and playoff bunting is hung at Chavez Ravine.
— Bill Plunkett (@billplunkettocr) August 11, 2019
Furthermore – when Roberts talked about the subject – he stopped short of saying that Maeda would definitely be in the bullpen in October. Rather, he simple left it open as a possibility; as managers often do.
“Anything is possible,” Dodgers manger Dave Roberts said on the topic before Saturday’s game. “We still have a lot of baseball to play.”
Maeda’s start for Los Angeles Saturday night was a huge turn in the right direction if he’s trying to begin to make a case. Moreover, in his previous dozen appearances before it, he was 0-6 with a 5.26 ERA.
With that said, Maeda didn’t seem to let on if he minds coming out of the pen in the postseason when asked about it after the game.
“The postseason is a whole different story. I’ll think about it once we get there,” he said. “But as of now, my job during the season is to pitch as a starter. So that’s not really on my mind as of now.”
Obviously, the Dodgers have their entrenched horses within the rotation you can use a permanent marker on. Beyond that, someone will contend for a fourth start which ends up being a creative area in postseason play for most teams.
While it’s difficult to say what area Maeda could help the Dodgers most when that time comes – the manager said it best. There is some baseball left to be played, and the rest of the season should serve as what hardens the cement and provides the answer.
How would you like to see Maeda utilized in October? Let us know in the comments.