Originally published by DodgerBlue.com
The Los Angeles Dodgers starting rotation has already been hampered by injuries to start the season, although the replacements haven’t skipped a beat filling in for those who have missed time.
One of those replacements has been Dustin May, who filled in for Clayton Kershaw on Opening Day on short notice and has arguably been the team’s best starting pitcher to start the season.
May turned in another quality outing in Monday night’s loss to the San Diego Padres, tossing six innings of two-run ball while allowing five hits with two strikeouts and two walks.
Unfortunately, May took his first loss of the year as the Dodgers’ offense stayed quiet all night. In four starts though, the rookie has pitched to a 2.75 ERA and 1.17 WHIP with 17 strikeouts and five walks in 19.2 innings.
Despite the stellar production and a fastball that consistently hits 99 mph, Dodgers manager Dave Roberts is still not committing to May remaining in the rotation for the rest of the season.
“Dustin’s doing nothing but show his value to our ballclub, he’s still establishing himself as a big league pitcher and understanding how to navigate lineups. There’s three starts and he’s been very good for us,” he said. “When that time comes, we’ll continue to discuss it, but Dustin is certainly doing everything he can.”
May’s time in the rotation could largely hinge on Alex Wood, who is beginning the process of throwing bullpen sessions and facing batters.
Roberts updates on Wood
Wood began the season in the rotation but only made one start before landing on the injured list with inflammation in his throwing shoulder. He was threw a bullpen session Monday and should next face batters.
“No timetable,” Roberts said. “Thursday would be the next progression, and that would be a simulated game facing some hitters. I don’t know if it would be here against some of our guys or going to the secondary site.
If May continues to pitch the way he has this season, it is hard to imagine him being replaced in the rotation in favor of Wood. If he is though, May could also be a potential weapon for the Dodgers’ bullpen in the postseason as he was in 2019.
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