Dustin May is on the injured list with a lower-back issue, but the hope is that he’ll be ready to go by the time the Dodgers start the National League Division Series on October 11. As to what role he might fill, that question remains open.
Before Monday’s game, Los Angeles manager Dave Roberts spoke with the media about the team’s plan to maximize the time between the regular season and the NLDS with simulated games at Dodger Stadium.
“Right now we know that Dustin could start, but we also know that there’s the potential that we can use him out of the bullpen. So, to build him up to try to get to three to four innings is something we’re going to try to accomplish.”
A team only needs four starters in the postseason, and the Dodgers have three of those spots locked down. Julio Urias, Clayton Kershaw, and Tyler Anderson will be starting in the NLDS, assuming they all remain healthy. That leaves just one spot left, with Tony Gonsolin the most logical choice to fill that spot.
But Gonsolin is unlikely to be stretched out to full starter length, and he might only be ready to go three or four innings. That would make normal starters like May and Andrew Heaney quite valuable coming out of the bullpen with the ability to take down three or four innings each.
For that reason, it makes sense for the Dodgers to get May as built up as possible, because chances are good that, regardless of his role on the team, they’ll be counting on him to throw multiple innings whenever he does show up in a postseason game.
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