The Los Angeles Dodgers signed left-hander Paul Maholm on the first day of Spring Training and he was brought in to compete for the fifth spot in the rotation. Incumbent starter Josh Beckett is on the road to recovery from TOS (Thoracic Outlet Syndrome) Surgery and the two have had mixed results thus far this spring.
Maholm started his third game this afternoon against the Cincinnati Reds and allowed six runs in just 2.2 innings as it was definitely his worst start this spring. After his performance, the 31-year-old lefty talked about the competition for the final start and if it weighs on him:
I mean. For me it’s preparing for the season and getting outs. For me, obviously I’ve gone through it. I’ve had worse than today. It’s to be healthy, to get my mechanics where they need to be and go from there.
Working in Maholm’s favor is that Beckett is dealing with a sprained right thumb, but the 33-year-old said that he’ll pitch tomorrow afternoon against the Chicago Cubs. Maholm was also the latest Dodger pitcher to admit to a tired arm as interim manager Tim Wallach referred to this time as the “dead zone” of Spring Training.
With that in mind, the Dodgers would presumably bring Maholm or Haren over to Australia as insurance if Clayton Kershaw or Hyun-Jin Ryu aren’t stretched out enough at the time. However, when asked about what he’s been told about the trip, Maholm broke some news:
No they really haven’t said a whole lot. I’m going and we’ll see once we get there what the deal is.
The Dodgers will play an exhibition game on March 20 against Team Australia prior to the Opening Series against the Arizona Diamondbacks on Saturday. Maholm figures to throw simulated games and side sessions in Australia to stay ready if he’s needed in relief while the Dodgers are Down Under.
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