Dodger Thoughts

Jon Weisman's outlet for dealing psychologically with the Los Angeles Dodgers, baseball and life

Tag: Jose De Leon (Page 1 of 2)

As Dodgers enter offseason, young starters provide foundation for rotation

NLDS-Game 5-Los Angeles Dodgers vs Washington Nationals

By Jon Weisman

In 2015, the combined total of big-league starts by Jose De León, Brock Stewart, Ross Stripling and Julio Urías — not to mention Kenta Maeda — was zero.

This year, the four traditional rookies amassed 38, with Maeda good for another 32. Nearly half the starts for the 2016 National League West champions came from brand new Major Leaguers, with the team going 40-30 (.571) in those games, compared with 51-41 (.554) in games started by veterans.

Just to clarify for the paranoid: Over the coming offseason, the Dodgers will scour the trade and free-agent markets (which includes midseason acquisition Rich Hill) for starting pitchers that might bolster the 2017 rotation.

At the same time, this year’s rookie quintet already puts Los Angeles a step closer to alleviating the reliance on quantity in recent seasons (16 starters in 2015, 15 in 2016).

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Dodgers lock in 25-homer quartet in loss to Padres

Andrew Toles congratulates Joc Pederson on his 25th homer of the year. (Denis Poroy/Getty Images)

Andrew Toles congratulates Joc Pederson on his 25th homer of the year. (Denis Poroy/Getty Images)

By Jon Weisman

Jose De León got overwhelmed by the Hunter Renfroe Express, but Ross Stripling continued to look like a postseason pitcher, even though Stripling was charged with the Dodgers’ 6-5 loss to San Diego.

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Kershaw, Dodgers look for anniversary clinch

Jon SooHoo/Los Angeles Dodgers

Clayton Kershaw and Sandy Koufax (Jon SooHoo/Los Angeles Dodgers)

Rockies at Dodgers, 6:10 p.m.
Kershaw CCLXII: Kershawlth Night, or What You Will
Chase Utley, 2B
Corey Seager, SS
Justin Turner, 3B
Adrian González, 1B
Yasmani Grandal, C
Josh Reddick, RF
Howie Kendrick, LF
Joc Pederson, CF
Clayton Kershaw, P

By Jon Weisman

On this night two years ago, Clayton Kershaw took the mound for the Dodgers against the Giants with a fourth consecutive National League West title within reach, and pitched eight innings to a 9-1 victory and the title.

With the Dodgers’ magic number currently at two, Kershaw has the opportunity to do the same thing tonight, with one catch. Los Angeles is hosting the Rockies while the Giants (and Madison Bumgarner) get underway in San Diego 30 minutes earlier, so it’s not entirely within the Dodgers’ control.

Nevertheless, Kershaw will attempt to do his part in his fourth start this month since returning from the disabled list. After allowing single runs in his first two innings at Miami, Kershaw has thrown 12 innings, allowing six baserunners and striking out 14 with a 0.00 ERA.

Chad Bettis, who has a 4.79 ERA but pitched a two-hit shutout at Coors Field against the Giants on September 5, will start for Colorado.

This will be Kershaw’s penultimate start of the 2016 regular season, according to Dave Roberts, who outlined most of the Dodgers’ starting pitching plans for the remaining games.

  • Brandon McCarthy is being activated from the disabled list to start Sunday.
  • After an off day Monday, Jose De León will take the mound Tuesday for the Dodgers at San Diego.
  • Kenta Maeda will follow De León against the Padres on Wednesday.
  • Thursday’s Dodger starter wasn’t officially announced, though Brett Anderson would line up for that spot.
  • For the final series in San Francisco, Kershaw will pitch in the first or second games (September 30 or October 1).
  • Rich Hill — who is being skipped this weekend as part of the ongoing effort to protect his blister-prone finger — will go October 1 or in the finale October 2.
  • Scott Kazmir, forced out of the game after an inning Friday, has neither been guaranteed another start this year nor ruled out.

If the Dodgers win the division, their first playoff game will be October 7.

Clayton Kershaw reunited with baseball

Arizona Diamondbacks vs Los Angeles Dodgers

Dodgers at Marlins, 4:10 p.m.
Kershaw CCLIX: Kersho and the Two Strings
Chase Utley, 2B
Corey Seager, SS
Justin Turner, 3B
Adrián González, 1B
Yasmani Grandal, C
Josh Reddick, RF
Joc Pederson, CF
Andrew Toles, LF
Clayton Kershaw, P

By Jon Weisman

Clayton Kershaw is off the disabled list and back on the mound for the Los Angeles Dodgers, who made the move official this afternoon.

Cary Osborne caught us up on Kershaw this morning. Moments ago, Dave Roberts told reporters that the Dodgers will take things “inning to inning” tonight,” but that the schedule calls for Kershaw to make his next start on four days’ rest Wednesday at Yankee Stadium.

In between, the Dodgers will have Rich Hill and Kenta Maeda pitching against the Marlins, followed by rookies Jose De León and Julio Urías at New York.  The latter two will have had more than a week’s worth of rest.

Roberts added that he expected to see Urías in the bullpen in October.

To create room on the 40-man roster for Kershaw, the Dodgers recalled right-handed pitcher Carlos Frias from Triple-A Oklahoma City, where he has been on the disabled list since July 12, and placed him on the big-league 60-day DL.

In doing so, the Dodgers have broken the known record for most players on the DL in one year with 28.

The 26-year-old Frias, who had a 3.95 ERA with 32 strikeouts in 43 1/3 minor-league innings this year, pitched in one game for the Dodgers in 2016, throwing four shutout innings July 7 against the Padres. He is tied for 14th all-time for the Dodgers in innings pitched with a single-season ERA of 0.00.

Debuting De León delights for Dodgers

Jose De Leon

RooksBy Jon Weisman

After his first big-league game, Jose De León has a 6.00 ERA, a number that doesn’t come close to reflecting how good he looked Sunday.

De León, who struck out 33 with no walks in his final three minor-league games this year, became the first Dodger pitcher ever to strike out nine and walk none in his MLB debut, a 7-4 victory over San Diego.

The 24-year-old, who became the first ever to wear No. 87 for the Dodgers, had the most strikeouts in a big-league initiation for the Dodgers since Kaz Ishii in 2002.

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Clayton Kershaw to start for Dodgers on Friday

San Diego Padres vs Los Angeles Dodgers

Padres at Dodgers, 1:10 p.m.
Howie Kendrick, LF
Kiké Hernandez, CF
Justin Turner, 3B
Adrián González, 1B
Yasiel Puig, RF
Chase Utley, 2B
Austin Barnes, C
Charlie Culberson, SS
Jose De Leon, P

By Jon Weisman

The Dodgers’ official roster move today was to make Jose De Leon their 31st player on the active roster and their first to take the mound today against San Diego.

But they also signaled a bigger roster move to come later this week. According to Dave Roberts, Los Angeles plan to send National League Cy Young Award candidate Clayton Kershaw to the mound Friday at Miami for the start of the Dodgers’ 10-game road trip.

If he resumes his big-league campaign Friday and works regularly on four days’ rest, Kershaw would theoretically have five regular-season starts remaining: September 9 (at Marlins), September 14 (at New York Yankees), September 19 (vs. Giants), September 24 (vs. Rockies) and either September 29 (at Padres) or September 30 (on five days’ rest at Giants).

Obviously, that’s just on paper — there’s a lot of road between now and the end of the month.

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Farm Fresh: De Leon’s 13K carry OKC to playoffs

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By Jon Weisman

While Brock Stewart was having his career-best Major League game in Los Angeles, Jose De Leon was firing up some heroics of his own.

De Leon struck out 13 with no walks in 7 2/3 shutout innings for Triple-A Oklahoma City, which clinched the Pacific Coast League American Northern Division title in a 6-1 victory over Colorado Springs.

In 41 2/3 innings over his past six starts, De Leon has a 1.30 ERA with 46 strikeouts.

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Scott Kazmir to see doctor in latest pitching twist

Screen Shot 2016-08-22 at 8.20.05 PM

By Jon Weisman

After retiring only seven batters in the Dodgers’ 18-9 victory today at Cincinnati, Scott Kazmir is scheduled to see a doctor on Tuesday, though the initial report of an MRI, as Cody Pace of MLB.com described, has been revised.

“Scott is fighting some physical things with his body,” Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said. “He’s doing what he can, but when your body doesn’t feel right, mechanically, it affects mechanics. He knows he wants to go out there and go deeper in a game. When you’ve got a 6-1 lead, he wants the decision, for himself, for the team. When you’re physically limited and you can’t execute, he’s frustrated.”

Kazmir is dealing with some stiffness in his neck and his back, something he said that he’s been dealing with “for years.” The problem with his neck in particular has messed with Kazmir’s mechanics, not allowing him to get his head toward the catcher properly and resulting in him flying open. …

… “No matter what happens, we’ve gotten this far,” Kazmir said. “I know how my body works. If we have some type of imaging, whatever happens, I’ll strengthen it up and I’ll continue to do what I do.”

Kazmir’s next start would theoretically be Saturday against the Cubs. Between now and then, about the only sure thing for the Dodgers is that Kenta Maeda will take the mound Tuesday against the Giants. Rich Hill remains on track to start Wednesday, and then the bigger question marks arise.

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Six Dodgers in Baseball America Top 100 update

Cody Bellinger (Jon SooHoo/Los Angeles Dodgers)

By Jon Weisman

Despite this year’s promotions of Corey Seager and Julio Urias and the debut of American rookie Kenta Maeda, Baseball America included six Dodgers in its Midseason Top 100 Prospects update.

Cody Bellinger (24), Jose De Leon (25), Alex Verdugo (44), Grant Holmes (60), Frankie Montas (82) and Willie Calhoun (98) were the Dodgers listed.

By comparison, the season-opening 2016 Baseball America 100 had Seager (1), Urías (4), De Leon (23), Maeda (50), Bellinger (54), Holmes (72) and Verdugo (100).

The new list does not include anyone taken in the 2016 draft or signed internationally this month.

 

Farm Fresh: Rob Segedin named Triple-A All-Star

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By Jon Weisman

Oklahoma City Dodgers infielder Rob Segedin was named to the Pacific Coast League All-Star team for the Triple-A All-Star Game on July 13 in Charlotte.

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Dodgers recall Carlos Frias, option Mike Bolsinger

Jon SooHoo/Los Angeles Dodgers

Jon SooHoo/Los Angeles Dodgers

Brewers at Dodgers, 1:10 p.m.
Chase Utley, 2B
Corey Seager, SS
Justin Turner, 3B
Adrian González, 1B
Trayce Thompson, RF
Joc Pederson, CF
Howie Kendrick, LF
A.J. Ellis, C
Kenta Maeda, P

By Jon Weisman

Carlos Frias has been called up from Triple-A Oklahoma City to bring a fresh arm to a tired Dodger pitching staff, with Mike Bolsinger being optioned down.

This move materialized as a likely possibility when Frias didn’t make a scheduled long-relief appearance Saturday, shortly before Bolsinger struggled to get seven outs.

Frias presumably could take Bolsinger’s turn in the rotation, but could be needed out of the bullpen first. In the past seven days, Dodger relievers have needed to face 96 batters, an average of 13.7 per day. The Dodgers have an off day Thursday, when Bolsinger was next scheduled to start.

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Pedro Baez, Yimi Garcia clinch spots on 25-man roster

Yimi Garcia and Pedro Baez in October 2015. (Jon SooHoo/Los Angeles Dodgers)

Yimi Garcia and Pedro Baez in October 2015. (Jon SooHoo/Los Angeles Dodgers)

Angels at Dodgers, 7:10 p.m.
Kiké Hernandez, 2B
Yasiel Puig, RF
Justin Turner, 3B
Adrian Gonzalez, 1B
Carl Crawford, LF
A.J. Ellis, C
Joc Pederson, CF
Corey Seager, SS
Kenta Maeda, P

By Jon Weisman

Ross Stripling has been named the Dodgers’ No. 5 starter and will take the mound April 8 at San Francisco, Dave Roberts announced, adding that Carlos Frias will be optioned to Triple-A Oklahoma City.

We’ll have more on Stripling shortly in a separate post. In the meantime, here are some more news and notes …

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Urias, De Leon among seven sent to minors

Ross Stripling pitching on March 6.

Ross Stripling pitching on March 6.

By Jon Weisman

Pitching prospects Julio Urias, Jose De Leon and Ross Stripling are among seven players the Dodgers sent to minor-league camp this afternoon.

From the 40-man roster, the Dodgers optioned second baseman Micah Johnson and pitchers Yaisel Sierra, Ian Thomas and Stripling. Non-roster players who were reassigned include De Leon, Urias and catcher Jack Murphy.

Johnson has made no errors despite leading Dodger infielders in playing time so far with 66 defensive innings, and is a likely callup at some point during the regular season.

Urias and De Leon have made the most noise among the pitchers, combining for eight strikeouts in nine innings, though it was actually Stripling who has had the best month. The 26-year-old right-hander, nearly two years removed from Tommy John surgery, pitched two shutout innings with four strikeouts in the Dodgers’ 5-1 loss to Kansas City today, and has six innings with a 0.00 ERA in Cactus League play.

None of the aforementioned pitchers, however, was destined to start the season in the Majors — least of all Sierra, the recent Cuban signee who has yet to appear in a game.

Still alive in the competition for the fifth spot in the Dodger starting rotation (behind Clayton Kershaw, Scott Kazmir, Kenta Maeda and Alex Wood) are Brandon Beachy, Mike Bolsinger and Zach Lee. The Dodgers have only two off days in April after the regular season starts.

Making his first appearance today since March 7, Wood pitched three innings, allowing a run on five baserunners with one strikeout.

“It felt good, it was good,” Wood said, according to MLB.com’s Barry M. Bloom. “I had one goal and that was to be efficient, which was a little different from the last time out. I was happy I was able to do that.”

Another Dodger pitching highlight today came from Kenley Jansen, who struck out the side in his inning.

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In case you missed it: Tale of two Uriases

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Julio Urias

Matthew Mesa/Los Angeles Dodgers

By Jon Weisman

Spirits soared with Julio Urias’ first inning on a Cactus League mound this year, before his second inning reminded us of his youth.

Taking the mound in the seventh inning today against the Angels, Urias struck out the side — before allowing a single, double, triple and walk to the four batters he faced in the eighth inning of what became an 8-4 Dodger loss, recapped by MLB.com.

Urias told AM 570 Dodger Talk’s David Vassegh that he struggled with his fastball command in his second inning of work. Hopefully, it wasn’t from his coffee run earlier today.

The Dodgers lost despite holding the Angels hitless from the second through seventh innings. Zach Lee gave up three hits in the first inning, including a three-run homer, but then faced the minimum over the next two innings. Kenley Jansen, J.P. Howell, Pedro Baez and Louis Coleman each pitched an inning of hitless ball. They were helped by Charlie Culberson, who made two outstanding plays at shortstop today.

What else have we got?

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In case you missed it: Wright, De Leon don’t mind the gap

By Jon Weisman

Jamey Wright, born in 1974, pitched the fifth inning for the Dodgers today.

Jose De Leon, born in 1992, pitched the sixth inning for the Dodgers today.

As wide as that age gap was, both could feel pleased with their performances.

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