When the Los Angeles Dodgers signed Brandon Beachy to a one-year deal in February that includes a club option for 2016 it was with the understanding the right-hander was not expected to return from a second Tommy John surgery until the All-Star break.
Beachy took the mound June 16 for his first game since August of 2013 when he was with the Atlanta Braves. The 28 year old threw 1.2 innings scoreless innings for High-A Rancho Cucamonga and has since advanced to Triple-A Oklahoma City. With his last start for OKC coming July 6, Beachy’s next trip to the mound could very well be at Dodger Stadium.
“We feel like he could be a guy that would be considered,” Dodgers manager Don Mattingly said of Beachy potentially starting Saturday’s game against the Milwaukee Brewers. While Beachy may be a candidate, Mattingly indicated there are several options.
“There are a number of guys again,” he said. “We haven’t really sat down and talked about it. I’m sure Andrew [Friedman] and Farhan [Zaidi] are thinking about different guys and different combinations. Possibly even the same type of game we had the other day [Monday].” The Dodgers’ decision to go to a bullpen game played a role in Monday’s affair lasting four hours and 13 minutes affair.
Mike Bolsinger and Carlos Frias both admirably answered the bell when the Dodgers were in need of answers to plug into the starting rotation and stabilize in the wake of season-ending injuries to Brandon McCarthy and Hyun-Jin Ryu.
However, Bolsinger and Frias have struggled recently, with Frias getting placed on the 15-day disabled list, thus setting off another search for a starter. Beachy is a combined 1-1 with a 2.41 ERA, 1.50 WHIP and 12 strikeouts over five Minor-League rehab assignments (17 innings). Opponents batted .269/.358/.313 in that stretch.
Mattingly said the right-hander’s velocity has returned to its pre-Tommy John surgeries level, and he believes Beachy benefitted physically and mentally from navigating the road to recovery at his own pace, rather than being rushed along.