Mere hours after Dave Roberts conceded Clayton Kershaw would not make his ninth consecutive Opening Day start, another domino has fallen. Roberts spoke to reporters after the game Monday evening and said that Walker Buehler would not be on the bump for the Dodgers next Thursday.
Roberts rules out Buehler for Opening Day start.
— Ken Gurnick (@kengurnick) March 19, 2019
Now that Kershaw and Buehler are out, many have to wonder who would be next in line. Hyun-jin Ryu, Kenta Maeda, and Rich Hill remain as the logical starters in line given that Ross Stripling is supposed to start an exhibition game in Anaheim.
Ryu last pitched on on Thursday, and Maeda threw the same day in a split squad game. The two pitchers have been nearly identical, with Ryu having the slight edge having given up one less run. They have both been dominant though, so there would not be a clear cut favorite.
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Hill started on Sunday against the Brewers and allowed three runs across 4.2 innings of work. Logically, he appears that he could be in line to make the Opening Day start. Hill could conceivably get one more tune-up game just in time to get the nod. And I have to admit, it would be pretty great to see. The 39-year-old journeyman has played on nine different major league teams and is playing his fourth year in Los Angeles.
Hill has allowed four earned runs across eleven innings of work this Spring.
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