A rotation with Clayton Kershaw is strong enough on its’ own, but the Dodgers add Zack Greinke and Hyun-Jin Ryu to that in order to form one of the top rotations in baseball. The back end of the rotation has gone through its’ own rotation with a handful of pitchers that have done an admirable job. This year, Brandon McCarthy and Brett Anderson will fill the fourth and fifth slots and attempt to provide the Dodgers with full rotation stability.
ESPN baseball analyst Buster Olney ranked the top-10 rotations in MLB and the Dodgers made the cut:
2. Los Angeles Dodgers
Kershaw posted a 1.77 ERA in 2014, more than a quarter of a run better than any other qualified starting pitcher, and Greinke ranked 13th. The rest of the rotation could be pretty good, but there is some daunting injury history. Hyun-Jin Ryu has had stints on the disabled list the past couple seasons, Brandon McCarthy has had just one season of more than 25 starts, and Brett Anderson has 52 starts in the past five years.
While all of the starters have something to work on, the collection of talent in the rotation could end up the best over the top-ranked Washington Nationals. McCarthy reached 200 innings for the first time in his career this past season, and his second half of the year with the New York Yankees provides solid hope. Kershaw has dominated the regular season, and must get over the playoff hump this year. Greinke had some elbow issues last year that he must overcome. He can opt out after this season if he chooses to do so. Ryu has made it his mission to reach 200 innings this season. Anderson has pitched in just 62 games over the past five seasons, so his main focus is staying healthy.
The Dodgers rotation hasn’t been the issue the past two seasons, and once again it shouldn’t be this season.
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