Originally published by DodgerBlue.com
The Los Angeles Dodgers starting rotation has some question marks heading into the 2022 regular season, but by the end of the year one of those could be filled by Dustin May, who continues to recover from Tommy John surgery.
May earned a spot in the Opening Day rotation last season and would have held that role again this year if not for tearing the ulnar collateral ligament (UCL) in his right elbow two months into the 2021 campaign.
The 24-year-old has made steady progress in his recovery and recently shared a look at his first bullpen session since the operation. May got back off the mound again on Tuesday, throwing a bullpen at Dodger Stadium before the Dodgers’ final game of Spring Training.
“Dustin was really good. I think he threw around 25 pitches,” manager Dave Roberts said. “It was just fastball and maybe some changeups, but it was as good as a ‘pen as I’ve seen him throw. And I’m not talking about intensity; he was probably right around 90 mph through that ‘pen, but just the repeated throw was really impressive.”
Roberts believed it was the second or third time May had thrown a bullpen session this year.
He remains on track to return from the 60-day injured list at some point after the All-Star break, which would effectively equate to a midseason trade the Dodgers.
For the time being, L.A. is poised to begin the 2022 season with Andrew Heaney and Tony Gonsolin rounding out the rotation in some order behind Walker Buehler, Julio Urias and Clayton Kershaw.
Buehler is the Dodgers’ Opening Day starter, but the team has not announced who will follow him. Roberts did rule out Heaney pitching during the Opening Series against the Colorado Rockies.
May worked on patience
While May has cleared important checkpoints in his recovery, he admitted the lengthy process to return from Tommy John surgery has been a challenge mentally because of the initial prolonged period he was not permitted to throw.
Have you subscribed to the Dodger Blue YouTube channel? Be sure to ring the notification bell to watch player interviews, participate in shows and giveaways, and stay up to date on all Dodgers news and rumors!