After so many years of pitching being the calling card for the Dodgers, it seems that things have fallen caught up with them. LA has seen one of its worst years in franchise history this year in terms of pitching, and yet they still find themselves sitting atop the National League West.
Somehow this team has survived through the season by duct-taping their rotation together with rookie pitchers and playing musical chairs with the bullpen arms.
It’s a testament to the entire organization and the depth that they have been able to build in recent years. The team has seen injuries take down their regular starters and regression take down the rest.
LA just finished off a 6-3 road trip against a few of the better teams in the American League and the New York Mets. They won the games in spite of their starting pitching, as their offense and bullpen carried them.
Before Monday’s loss, the starters allowed 28 runs in 29.1 innings. That’s not very good and isn’t up to the standard that this organization has set for itself. It’s been a frustrating season on the mound for the Dodgers, and it seems to be getting worse.
Julio Urias has an ERA of 6.75 since returning from a long stint on the injured list, including giving up eight against Baltimore this past week. Tony Gonsolin owns a 6.97 ERA since June 18, and their most consistent pitcher, Clayton Kershaw, is currently injured.
At one point, the bullpen was their biggest worry, so despite the recent success, the team should look to improve there as well.
But with the trade deadline coming up here soon, the Dodgers have a clear need. President of Baseball Operations Andrew Friedman has said that the team plans to be aggressive in looking for help at the trade deadline. If they aren’t, LA will likely see another early playoff exit.
No matter what happens, the Dodgers need to bring in some extra pitching talent. They can’t keep throwing the same guys out there every day while expecting different results.
This team is extremely competitive without a great starting rotation, so imagine what they could be with one. The pressure is on the front office now to deliver, and the fate of the season rests in what the team does during the deadline.
Photo Credit: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports
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