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Dodgers: Roberts Admits Three Young Arms Could Get Pushed to the Bullpen

The Dodgers might be TOO deep.



The Dodgers enter the 2021 season with a problem they’ve never really had before. The lack of available spots in the starting rotation was already a glaring issue even before they went out and signed Trevor Bauer to a deal. Obviously, it’s a GREAT issue for an organization to have. 

As it stands, the Dodgers will probably enter Opening Day with the expected 4 at the front of the rotation. That would be Clayton Kershaw, Walker Buehler, Trevor Bauer, and David Price, in no particular order. That leaves 1 spot for 3 young arms to fight for. 

After Tuesday night’s game against the Giants, Dave Roberts admitted there will have to be som concessions. That likely means that the Dodgers will be forced to push some combination of Julio Urias, Dustin May, and Tony Gonsolin to the bullpen at some point. 

Sure, yeah. I think those guys have all shown what they can do at the Major League level, so we just want these guys to continue to build up. But to your question, that certainly is a possibility.

The good news is that the Dodgers will need them all in a starting capacity at some point during the season. Doc said himself that when the season starts, pitchers probably won’t be as built up as they would be at the end of a season. That makes guys like May, Gonsolin, and Urias all incredibly useful additions after the main starters. 

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That also makes the Dodgers bullpen potentially lethal. Adding in 2 of those guys to the mix could really improve them without any of the additions made during the offseason. However it shapes out, this staff is going to be insane on paper. 

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Written by Brook Smith

Brook is the Senior Editor of Dodgers Nation, with several years of experience in sports journalism. He is an avid Dodgers and Lakers fan, and can be spotted fairly often at Dodger Stadium and Staples Center.

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  1. This staff IS insane with talent. Even as good as the Padres have become, they are still far behind this team top to bottom

  2. we could have had lemahieu, ozuna, and turner for the price of the bauer contract. that would have eliminated this putting our prized pups in the pen. nice to have a cy young in the stable but i hate to play with these kid’s psyche.

    • I wouldn’t be so quick to give up on Price. Pitching in Dodger stadium will be oh so beneficial to him, compared to pitching in Fenway park. Plus the Southern Cal weather will benefit him. The Dodgers have a great clubhouse & a VERY competitive pitching staff. Barring injuries & all the crap that’s floating around the world now, I believe it will be a great year for him.

  3. I guess reporters have to find something to wrote about.

    The Dodgers have been consistent for the past…year(?) that Julio Urias is a starter. Not hemming and hawing that “well gee maybe he is, lets see how the spring goes.” He will be stretched out as a starter and is the #5 in the rotation [for the regular season]. I think everyone understands that in the playoffs it’s all hands on deck and anything goes.

    The most likely question is if Gonsolin or May go to the bullpen, or continue stretching out as starters at the alternate training site (until AAA Season starts).

  4. Even without any significant injuries, a 6th starter will get a lot of work due to giving the starters an extra day rest, double headers, family deaths, baby deliveries, stiff neck or back, blisters, suspension, to name just a few things that inevitably come up. Additionally the odds are great one or two guys go down, either for the season, or significant time, I don’t know the historical odds a team ends up with the same 5 starters they started with, but it almost never happens. There have been recent seasons the Dodgers have used up to 13 different starters. I suspect even Josiah Gray will be needed at some point.

  5. A lot of good comments!
    Price needs to earn a spot as much as May and Gonsolin.
    Lux will be given a reasonable opportunity to fit in.
    Guggenheim went all in to have a deep pitching staff, which will probably be needed, but on the surface it looks exorbitant.
    Friedman is great at having players with options so shuffle players in and out. Even May and Gonsolin still have options.
    And lastly, I have tracked our starting oitchers for the last 3 yrs and it’s rare that the same 5 pitchers start for 3 rotations in a row. Its what I would call a hybrid 6 man rotation. So counting off who the 5 starters might be is too old school. Their plan,imo, going in will be to use 6-7 starters on a regular basis.

  6. Wrong Roberts already said Urias the fifth starter not reliever and he earned it . Funny how bias reporters keep doubting Urias just cause he’s Mexican.Price is over the hill period and getting older he’s not smart like Kershaw.The man pitch incredible like Kershaw said to close out both Braves and Rays while Buhler couldn’t answer the bell with 3 days rest cause he needs 4 days rest. Truth is without Urias Braves win that 7th game as dodgers only had 1 run lead.So give this man more respect Like Kershaw does.Julio will be number 2 starter behind Kershaw or number or 3 behind Buhler.Price gets demoted to bullpen or traded problem is nobody wants him only roberts.

    • Urias has to be one of the 5 starters, he has earned it, period. But with due respect to John Lennon, all we are saying, is give Price a chance.

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