The Dodgers pitching rotation has been a merry go round. I want to call the rotation the “Mash Unit” because they always seem to be in the E.R.. The bullpen and hot bats have kept the season afloat. But now as the Dodgers hold a one game lead over the “Hated Ones” in the NL West and embark on their quest to make the postseason pitching is going to be the key.
The starting pitching now has to come to the forefront. Scott Kazmir seems to be having issues with his neck and back. Brett Anderson might be having a blister issue. I do hope he goes on the DL, I definitely don’t want him starting game 3 against the Giants this week. Help will be on the way for the Dodgers on a couple of fronts.
Scott Kazmir has been dealing with back and neck issues. The team doctors will examine him tomorrow in LA.
— Andy McCullough (@McCulloughTimes) August 22, 2016
Rich Hill expects to start on Wednesday.
— Andy McCullough (@McCulloughTimes) August 19, 2016
— DODGERS LAKERS NEWS (@DodgersLakers) August 19, 2016
So reinforcements are on the way. Also September call ups are on the way to expand the rosters. In my view once Hill and Kershaw are back in the fold. The rotation should be Kershaw, Hill, Maeda, Urias, and Stripling. With September call ups, you can add Jose De Leon to the mix to go to a six man rotation in September. I don’t have any confidence in Bud Norris, Brett Anderson, Brandon McCarthy, or Scott Kazmir at this time. Alex Wood can help out in the bullpen once he returns. The Dodgers need to go with pitchers who are pitching well in order to make the postseason. Now hopefully Kershaw and Hill will return to adequate form to bolster the rotation.
Once the postseason starts, if the Dodgers make it then they can go with a four man rotation. Who that fourth man will be is anybody’s guess. You would figure Kershaw, Hill, and Maeda are locked in as the top three. Kershaw and Hill should be well rested for the postseason since they have spent a lot of time on the DL. With Kenta Maeda will have to see how he would do with short rest in the postseason assuming the Dodgers go with a three man rotation. The September call-ups will be great opportunity for the spent bullpen to get some rest before the postseason to recharge the batteries. The Dodgers must avoid the wild card game so that’s why these nine games against the Giants are so important. Don’t forget they also have three against the Cubs on this current home stand after the Giants.
Hopefully Josh Reddick‘s bat will awaken to help with the offense. With the call-ups comes the reappearance of Yasiel Puig. Puig is batting .481/.548/.926 in seven games since his demotion to Triple-A Oklahoma City. He has slugged three home runs and struck out just once in 31 plate appearances. If Puig is still with the Dodgers come September, he adds another dimension to this team that can be an asset to get into postseason and to advance.