Update: Walker Buehler will in fact return today in Los Angeles!
.@buehlersdayoff is being activated today instead of pitching a rehab assignment. He’ll be available out of the pen. He’ll get a clean inning when he comes in. Josh Fields on DL with right shoulder inflammation.
— Alanna Rizzo (@alannarizzo) June 28, 2018
Have you missed Walker Buehler? I know I have. For folks like us, good news broke on Wednesday. Buehler is pain-free, and his return to the Dodgers’ starting rotation looks imminent. Per Ken Gurnick of MLB.com, things went well during Buehler’s 25-pitch bullpen session.
Pitcher Walker Buehler was pain-free while throwing a 25-pitch bullpen session on Tuesday and could return to the Dodgers rotation by next week, manager Dave Roberts indicated.
Buehler — who made three starts unknowingly with a rib microfracture — is scheduled for another bullpen session on Thursday, then would likely pitch in a Minor League rehab game before being activated by the Dodgers.
In fact, Buehler will throw a three-inning rehab assignment tomorrow with AAA Oklahoma City.
Walker Buehler will throw in a rehab start tomorrow for OKC.
— Ken Gurnick (@kengurnick) June 27, 2018
If that goes well – the expectation is that Buehler’s next appearance would be a start for the big league club next week. The National League Rookie of the Year frontrunner sounds ready to go.
“I think they want me to pitch as soon as I can be healthy and without risking any variation to my delivery. We’re all on the same page. Slowing me down is not a negative thing. I’m 23, and sometimes they’ve got to protect me from myself a little bit.”
Ironically, the Dodgers were struggling to find starting pitching about a month ago. Caleb Ferguson and Dennis Santana were called up from the minor leagues to make their big league debuts. Nevertheless, the team suddenly has a surplus of starting pitching and is toying with the idea of a six-man rotation.
I truly can’t wait for Buehler to return to the big league club, just to see what he can accomplish next. Already part of a no-hitter and several other big wins as a rookie, it feels like he belongs as part of this 2018 core. As the Dodgers continue to write the story for this season, Buehler will play a big part. If things break right, he will be taking home some personal award hardware after the season. And he’ll have some stories to tell about making a postseason start as a 23-year old rookie. There is so much to love about this kid, we’re glad he’s feeling better physically.
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