Dodgers Nation will be following Walker Buehler’s starts as he seeks to be the next elite Dodgers pitcher. The Dodgers have a history of dominant players on the mound from Sandy Koufax to Don Drysdale to Clayton Kershaw. As a former first round pick and a highly touted prospect, Buehler looks to be the next big thing in Los Angeles. All we can do is relax and enjoy the show.
June 8, 2018
Season statistics coming into the game: (3-1, 2.74 ERA)
Season statistics after the game: (4-1, 2.63 ERA)
The Opponent: Atlanta Braves
Stadium: Dodgers Stadium
Days of Rest: 5
Catcher: Yasmani Grandal
Innings Pitched: 5.1
Earned Runs: 1
Home Runs: 0
Pitch Count: 71
Batters Faced: 18
MLB.com Game Score: 69
Walker Buehler came into his ninth career start facing the Atlanta Braves for the first time in his life. This Braves lineup featured Buehler’s college teammate Dansby Swanson from Vanderbilt University as both players were drafted in the first round of the 2015 MLB Draft.
Buehler struggled in his last start, allowing a career-high eight hits, as well as four runs over five innings in Colorado. Coming back home, Buehler returned to a place where he has excelled. He possessed a 1.44 ERA at Dodgers Stadium this year coming into the start. With the bullpen overworked over the past few weeks, the Dodgers needed Buehler to go deep into this game.
Walker Buehler threw four innings of perfect baseball to begin the game. He came into the fifth inning with a pitch count of 45. He surrendered his lone run in the fifth after allowing a leadoff single to Nick Markakis and an RBI double by Kurt Suzuki. Those were the only hits Buehler allowed during his outing. Buehler exited the game in the sixth inning after expressing discomfort in his ribs.
#Dodgers RHP Walker Buehler is perfect through four innings with two strikeouts vs. #Braves. Has cranked his fastball from 94 mph in first inning up to 98 mph in fourth. Mixing in some sliders and curves. Only two hard-hit balls, both by Dansby Swanson (4-3, F-8).
— Mike DiGiovanna (@MikeDiGiovanna) June 9, 2018
Walker Buehler continued his spectacular season with his outing against the Braves. He pitched efficiently, allowing only two base runners in 5.1 innings. He effectively used a combination of his fastball, curveball, slider, changeup and knuckle curve. While he struck out only four batters, Buehler did not surrender a walk in his start.
Buehler’s only costly mistake came on a hanging slider to Kurt Suzuki that resulted in an RBI double in the fifth inning.
The real bad news for the Dodgers came when Dave Roberts removed Buehler from the game due to rib soreness. Dave Roberts noted after the game that Buehler had trouble breathing due to the injury. This news comes as a blow to the team with Ross Stripling and Alex Wood named as the only other starting pitchers in the rotation.
— Michael J. Duarte (@michaeljduarte) June 9, 2018
While Walker Buehler was on the mound, he tossed a superb outing. Unfortunately, his night did not last as long as the Dodgers had hoped with his rib injury. It is important to note that a line drive struck Buehler’s midsection in a start in May and the remnants of that hit may be lingering for the rookie. Dave Roberts announced that the team would run tests on the pitcher. If the injury is not serious, Buehler’s next scheduled start will be in Los Angeles against the San Francisco Giants next weekend.
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