The NLDS between the Dodgers and the Nationals is scheduled to start on Friday evening and the Dodgers will be without one of their best relievers. This is another causality of the starting rotation being unable to provide adequate Innings all season.
Left handed reliever Adam Liberatore will have arthroscopic surgery on his left elbow on Thursday. He is expected to be ready for the 2017 season, but will miss the entire 2016 postseason. This is a huge loss for the Dodgers since Liberatore was one of their most reliable relievers this season until he succumbed to elbow inflammation.
Liberatore at one point did not allow a run for 28 consecutive games from May 20 through July 22 this season. That broke the previous Dodger record set by John Candelaria back in 1991. Unfortunately the lack of innings provided by the starting rotation directly led to several relievers being forced to the disabled list stemming from overuse. Liberatore was one of those relievers. The left hander was placed on the disabled list for about a month during the summer from July 20 to August 19 with the official diagnosis being left elbow inflammation.
Liberatore was almost flawless out of the Dodger bullpen throughout the majority of the season until he began to suffer from elbow inflammation this summer. The 29-year old left hander finished the season with a 3.38 ERA in 58 appearances. He posted a 2-2 record and struck out 47 in 42.2 innings pitched. Liberatore allowed just 17 walks and posted a 1.195 WHIP while striking out 9.9 per nine innings pitched. Liberatore allowed just two home runs this season and 7.2 hits per nine innings pitched.
Rookie left hander Grant Dayton is rumored to be taking Liberatore’s spot on the postseason roster, but the Dodgers have several other left handers they can choose from. The list includes veterans J.P. Howell, Luis Avilan, starters Brett Anderson, and rookie Julio Urias.