The Dodgers have decided to activate Mike Bolsinger and go with a six man rotation for the time being. Bolsinger is going to be activated from the disabled list on Wednesday and start against the Angels in Anaheim. The Dodgers have a brutal slog of games over the next several weeks. They are in the midst of playing 20 consecutive games without a day off. Their next day off is not until May 26th.
The main reason for the Dodgers making the decision of using a six-man rotation is because the club is concerned about Kenta Maeda’s workload. It appears that he is having some problems adjusting to the major league schedule. Maeda coming from Japan is used to pitching once per week, instead of the typical every five days in the majors. The NPB schedule is shorter than the MLB schedule. While we play a 162 game schedule over here, the NPB plays a 144 game schedule with the starting pitchers taking the hill only once per week. This would also give Ross Stripling a chance to rest as well. He’s coming off of Tommy John surgery just two years ago and the Dodgers have kept him on a strict pitch count.
The numbers seem to back up Maeda’s stamina issue. In his four starts where he has pitched on five days or less of rest he has a 5.16 ERA. On days where he has pitched with 6 or more days of rest he has a 1.50 ERA.
5 or less days of rest
6 or more days of rest
The Dodgers are even more worried after another lackluster outing from Maeda. On May 11 Maeda allowed four runs on six hits over five innings in a loss to the Mets. In last night’s loss to the Angels he lasted just four innings and allowed four earned runs on five hits. He has now lost three consecutive decisions. Overall Maeda is 3-3 with a 2.87 ERA. He’s thrown 47 innings and made eight starts.
Maeda needs some rest. The Dodgers are counting on Bolsinger to be able to step in and give them some innings. Bolsinger was recovering from an oblique injury that had sidelined him since spring training. The 28-year old right hander made 21 starts for the Dodgers in 2015 and tossed 109.1 innings of work. He posted a 6-6 record with a 3.62 ERA while striking out 8.1 per nine innings.
The Dodgers will have to clear roster space in order to activate him to the major league roster. That means somebody is going to have to be cut to make room. So expect an announcement on Wednesday evening.