Dodgers News: Tony Gonsolin Downplays Severity of Forearm Injury
When word came down that Tony Gonsolin was going on the injured list with a forearm strain on Monday morning, most fans jumped to one of two conclusions: either the world was ending, or this was a phantom IL stint designed to manage Gonsolin’s workload.
The actual fact appears to be somewhere in between, a legitimate but minor arm concern that gave them an opportunity to do some load management they were considering doing anyway, as Bill Plunkett reports in the Orange County Register.
“It’s overall just kind of playing it safe and really let it heal,” said Gonsolin, who is 16-1 with a National League-low 2.10 ERA in 23 starts. “It does kind of suck, the timing coming into September. But I do think it’s also a blessing a little bit. Give me a little break and then go into the playoffs.”
Gonsolin felt some tightness “coming out of my last outing,” but he had dealt with a similar issue and expected it to go away on its own. He went through his normal between-starts routine, but when the tightness didn’t clear up on its own, he reached out to pitching coach Mark Prior.
“Felt a little tight coming out of that (bullpen session),” Gonsolin said. “I did a little more modality stuff to try and calm it down. Then told Prior yesterday right when I got here. I was, ‘Hey, this is what I’m thinking. I really want to play catch and see if I’m good to go for tomorrow.’
“We came to the conclusion that it would probably be best to skip this one and since we’re doing that, might as well give it a break for whatever the IL days is … so 15 days. Just give it that two-week break.”
According to Jack Harris of the Los Angeles Times, manager Dave Roberts had been considering managing Gonsolin’s innings this month anyway.
Roberts also said the team had been thinking about giving Gonsolin a break at some point, given his career-high innings total
"So now when there’s a little smoke [in the forearm]," he said, "we felt that this is that opportunity.”
— Jack Harris (@Jack_A_Harris) August 29, 2022
Injuries, especially to pitchers, can be unpredictable, but to the extent that we can guess about a pitcher’s arm issue, Gonsolin’s lack of concern makes this seem like the best-case scenario for “league leader in ERA who has only lost one game all year goes on the injured list five weeks before the playoffs start.”
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It’s perfect timing to “rest” Gonsolin. It gives him a couple starts at the end of September to recalibrate for the postseason. The tough part is sitting down a pitcher who is competing for a Cy Young. Hopefully, that’s all this is.