The Dodgers’ starting rotation and bullpen have been one of the biggest questions marks to start the season. While the offense has been running like a well-oiled machine, the pitching staff as a whole has barely managed to keep Los Angeles in early contention. The good news is, it now looks as though both the starting rotation and bullpen will get a boost in the coming weeks. Julio Urias, fresh off of a gem of a game in Milwaukee, will move back to the bullpen.
#Dodgers plan for tonight to be Julio Urias' last start for awhile. He goes to bullpen with Ryu returning to rotation. But Dave Roberts said: "He's not going to be your typical left-handed reliever." Will pitch multiple innings, no back-to-back days. Definitely not a LOOGY
— Bill Plunkett (@billplunkettocr) April 19, 2019
The funny thing about the Dodgers is that Julio would no doubt be a solid number two, if not number one, on almost any staff in baseball. And now he will return to the bullpen with the rotation finally getting healthy. Clayton Kershaw made his return this week from a sore shoulder, Hyun-jin Ryu will get a start on Saturday after a groin strain, and Rich Hill looks like he is locked in and ready to start a game at any time.
Dave Roberts said Hyun-Jin Ryu will start Saturday, pushing Clayton Kershaw to Sunday.
— Jorge Castillo (@jorgecastillo) April 18, 2019
If this was indeed Julio’s last start of the season, he made sure to put on a show for all of us. The young lefty from Culiacan shut down one of the best teams in baseball, holding the Brewers hitless through four innings. He finished up allowing just one hit across six innings of work and a career-high nine strikeouts. He will now take that talent to the bullpen where he will likely be used in some fairly high leverage situations.
The Dodgers bullpen is getting better and better after a fairly rough start to the season. Joe Kelly started his Dodgers tenure by allowing eight runs across his first four appearances, but he has been much more effective as of late. Pedro Baez got off to a rocky start as well but has balanced out aside from one bad game in St Louis. He has now pitched in three consecutive games without allowing a run or hit. In fact, he hasn’t allowed a runner to reach at all in those appearances.
The Dodgers starting rotation as of this weekend will consist of Clayton Kershaw, Walker Buehler, Hyun-jin Ryu, Kenta Maeda, and Ross Stripling.
[button link=”https://www.dodgersnation.com/rich-hill-interview-ktla-analysis-and-exceptional-dodgers-starting-pitching-ready-for-d-mountain-episode-53-blue-heaven-podcast/2019/04/19/” type=”big” color=”red”] RICH HILL INTERVIEW, KTLA ANALYSIS, AND EXCEPTIONAL DODGERS STARTING PITCHING: READY FOR D. MOUNTAIN [/button]