Once again, Julio Urias will pitch under the cloud of an innings limit, quite possibly indicating an uncertain plan and an uncertain role for the young lefty.
Dodger Talk host David Vassegh joined the Petros and Money show on Monday and touched on the Dodgers’ plan for the 22-year-old.
From what I’ve been told, the Dodgers and him [Urias] are on the same page, and they’re targeting somewhere between 70 and 100 innings.
Vassegh went on to reference that the Dodgers won’t “box themselves in” with exact innings limits, much like they did with Walker Buehler in 2018.
They don’t want to get into the same situation as the Nationals did with Stephen Strasburg a few years back where they backed themselves into a corner and couldn’t get out of it because they put a hard count of innings on his season.
The Dodgers didn’t do that last season on Buehler, and we saw how well that went, and they’re not going to do that with Julio either.
70 innings might entail relief appearances for Urias, which would be a total disservice to him. Is it arguable that Urias’ mishandling necessitated the major surgery last season.
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Although the Dodgers have a stacked rotation without Julio Urias in the mix, it would be nice to see him crack the rotation sooner rather than later, especially considering the fact that the current rotation includes three guys who are injury prone.
Urias himself is coming off of a major shoulder surgery, anterior capsule surgery, the same procedure that ruined Johan Santana’s career.
Urias debuted with the club in 2016 and has pitched to the tune of a 3.71 ERA across 104 frames since then. He has looked sharp in Spring Training so far. Across six innings, he has only allowed a solo home run, one walk, and has struck out six. He has been clocked as high as 98 miles per hour this spring. It appears all of his off-speed stuff has been working well, too.
Julio Urías, Nasty 85mph Changeup. ? pic.twitter.com/ahjXD7gyXX
— Rob Friedman (@PitchingNinja) March 10, 2019
In addition, Urias looked fantastic in a very small sample size in 2018. He threw four scoreless innings in relief with seven strikeouts, only allowing one hit.
Something important to note before being completely furious with the front office is the way Walker Buehler was handled just last season. He was supposed to have an innings cap for the season, but as the Dodgers quickly realized, they needed him down the stretch. If Urias proves too valuable, he could easily exceed the mark that has been predetermined for him. If the Dodgers could muster closer to 100 or even 120 innings from Urias, it would surely benefit the team.
Urias continues to be handled with kids’ gloves which may or may not be the correct way to handle him. Only time will tell.