Dodgers Playoffs: Dave Roberts’ Thoughts on Walker Buehler’s Blister
The irritating storyline following Walker Buehler and the Dodgers around all postseason long. On Sunday, Dave Roberts was asked about Walker’s irritated digit and it’s status heading into his game 1 start in the NLCS against the Braves.
I do believe we’re going to monitor it. But I do believe the 95 pitches in the four innings, if we could spread those out a little bit better, a little more efficient, I think that looks at 6 [innings] and 100 [pitches]. But that still goes with watching it every inning, but Walker’s in the best place he’s been at in the last few weeks.
Notably, Buehler threw 90+ pitches for only the second time in 2020 last Tuesday against the San Diego Padres. All year long it has been a struggle for consistency for the 26-year-old right-hander. First, the season was postponed due to the pandemic. Then another compressed ramp-up period led to inconsistency early in the season and was soon followed by that blister.
Now he’ll face an Atlanta Braves lineup that has given him fits in the postseason once before. Where Buehler has another little advantage is in the ballpark. The Dodgers have spent the last week at Globe Life Field and have 6 games all told in the new Rangers home. However, this will be Atlanta’s first visit since the park opened. And as we’ve seen, this field doesn’t play as friendly to home run hitters — something the Braves definitely are.
NEXT: Dave Roberts Updates on Edwin Rios, Hints at Roster Changes for NLCS
Just the same, Buehler and Dodgers cannot afford to let the Braves get out in front early by serving up the long ball early in the game. The key of course is for Dodgers to have a similR game plan as th ee y had in Nlds, meaning make contact, especially with RISP.