We just can’t have nice things, can we? After the first full day at Camelback Ranch, the Dodgers are already dealing with a few dings and dents in the pitching staff. Or, more accurately, soreness.
Addressing the media for the first time this spring, manager Dave Roberts talked about the different look of this spring training. He and the coaching staff had to conduct introductory meetings outside at a fan-less Glendale complex in Arizona, which he admitted felt weird without fans. Of course, the facility is closed to fans amid the ongoing pandemic.
Beyond the weirdness of an empty CBR, Roberts mentioned a pair of pitchers already dealing with some early physical ailments.
Joe Kelly’s still coming back — he’s not quite there yet, but it’s nothing like a setback or anything. … He was just playing catch and his arm got sore on him. So we just want to make sure we nip it right now.
Of course, Kelly — outside of his 8 game suspension — missed much of the 2020 season with a shoulder issue. Still, he made it into 12 regular season games and allowed 1 run over 5 postseason appearances last October.
In addition to Kelly, Roberts mentioned righty hurler Mitch White as someone who is also “a little sore,” but, like Kelly, he isn’t worried about any lingering issues.
Ramping up from a 60 game season to a full 162 will undoubtedly be a challenge for the league in 2021. And certainly, the health of a pitching staff is certain to be a popular (or unpopular?) topic all season long. Thankfully, LA boasts one of the deepest groups in all of baseball.
The club will officially welcome position players to camp on Monday, February 22, and open a slate of 29 exhibition games starting on the 28th.