It may be nothing more than early spring aches and pains, but the Dodgers starting rotation is starting to thin out already before a single pitch has been thrown. The club reported that left hander Brett Anderson felt a tweak in his lower back after a bullpen session on Wednesday afternoon at Camelback Ranch. Knowing Anderson’s injury history he’ll be in an old folk’s home by next Tuesday.
The Dodgers halted his session and are now reporting that he could be doubtful for his first scheduled exhibition start on Sunday. Shocking news right guys? Brett Anderson hurt?….Why I’ve never heard of such a preposterous thing.
Hopefully it’s just soreness and Anderson will be back on the mound as soon as possible. However Anderson does have a history of back problems, including surgery in 2014. The Dodgers are obviously concerned and ordered him to get some tests done. We should know the results within the next day or two. Until then I would assume that Anderson will be held out of action.
This is definitively cause for concern, but not a reason to panic. The Dodgers were counting on Brett Anderson to be their fourth starter this season, but they have a lot of internal options should Anderson not be able to go. There is still a month to go before the regular season starts.
Still it makes me wonder why the front office is even bothering with these guys. Hyun-jin Ryu’s shoulder is so tenuous it’s probably being held together by duct tape and rubber bands. It would be a miracle if the Dodgers were to get even half a season out of him.
I think the front office has done a much better job this winter with the additions of Kenta Maeda and Scott Kazmir, however last winter’s signings were possibly the worst I have ever seen. The brain trust’s idea of how to build a pitching staff is centered around egotism and advanced formulas. You can’t build a pitching staff on math equations.
I’m no math geek or genius so I’ll just give it to you straight. I’m coming at this from a perspective of common sense. To me, innings and health mean a lot when building a pitching staff. It’s always best to choose from proven commodities that have good health histories. Gambling on guys who are always hurt and have established careers of mediocrity is just asking for failure. They’re giving Brett Anderson 15.8 million dollars this year. Can you imagine if Ned Colletti made these types of moves? He would be ridiculed.
Of course the moneyball kids never want to admit when their poster boy Andrew Friedman makes a mistake. There’s always an excuse. “How could he have known”? Look, it doesn’t take Nostradamus to figure out that Anderson and McCarthy were going to get hurt. Nobody has a crystal ball, but the lack of common sense is stunning to me.
Fortunately Friedman and company have done a great job of building the farm system and that incredible depth we hear about on a daily basis. So when Anderson gets hurt (big surprise) and McCarthy shuffles off to buffalo with his 48 million dollars we have plenty of guys to fill the role. I’m surprised Anderson stayed on the mound for 180 innings last year.
So I say it’s time for the Dodgers to pitch the kids. Alex Wood is just 24 years old and I think with some help from pitching coach Rick Honeycutt could have a pretty good year. I wasn’t impressed by him last season, but he’s got potential provided they fix his funky arm angles and delivery. He can slot in right behind Kazmir in the fourth slot. The five spot can be up for grabs between several youngsters like Julio Urias, Jose De Leon, Jharel Cotton, and even Mike Bolsinger. This is how the rotation should probably look like after the injuries.
- Clayton Kershaw
- Kenta Maeda
- Scott Kazmir
- Alex Wood
- Julio Urias
If you remember I correctly predicted that Brandon McCarthy would be hurt and useless last spring and I was berated by the moneyball kids online. Everyone told me how little I knew about baseball. It just takes some common sense and experience to figure it out.
There’s no reason for the Dodgers to continue to jerk around with these guys. Whether the old men take the mound or not, the future is very bright for the Dodgers. There is a lot of time left, but if these guys can’t stay on the mound then it’s time to let the Dodger’s rich and talented farm system take over.