Dodgers Injury Update: Walker Buehler Beginning Rehab Assignment

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Walker Buehler underwent his second Tommy John surgery and had his right flexor tendon repaired roughly one year ago, and he is still focused on returning to the Los Angeles Dodgers this season.

The odds were against Buehler on returning in 2023, but he has continued to express confidence that he will pitch this season. The right-hander began facing hitters in simulated games last month and he even threw to Masters Champion Jon Rahm.

Buehler continued to face batters over one-inning sessions but now is poised to take a step forward by joining Triple-A Oklahoma City for the start of a rehab assignment.

“It’s one to two innings on Sunday,” Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said.

Buehler was hoping to rejoin the Dodgers rotation on September 1, but that aggressive timeline didn’t come to be.

Nevertheless, Buehler getting activated off the 60-day injured list at any point this season would be accomplishment. His recovery has already surprised Roberts.

“I’m shocked. But in that same breath, guys like Walker are just different,” Roberts recently said. “They’re wired and mentally different, physically they’re just freaks of nature. So you can’t discount that.

“I was surprised that he put it in the universe he was going to be back (in 2023), but I’m going to bet on him.”

Buehler went 6-3 with a 4.02 ERA and 1.29 WHIP in 12 starts prior to missing the remainder of the 2022 season. He faces a final year of salary arbitration before potentially becoming a free agent after the 2024 season.

How long would Walker Buehler go on a rehab assignment?

An MLB player can be assigned to any of their club’s Minor League affiliates to rehab an injury for a maximum of 30 days for a pitcher, or 20 days for a position player.

Assuming his health remains in order, Buehler is likely to make multiple starts for OKC.

“I think the floor would be three, and then we’ll go from there,” Roberts said.

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