Originally published by DodgerBlue.com
Prior to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic postponing the start of the 2020 regular season, the Los Angeles Dodgers’ starting rotation had officially been set.
Clayton Kershaw was poised to make a franchise-record ninth start on the original Opening Day date in March, while the rest of the rotation consisted of Walker Buehler, David Price, Julio Urias and Alex Wood.
Price has since opted out of playing this season, opening the door for one of Ross Stripling, Tony Gonsolin or Dustin May. As for the others, they still figure to play a major role in the starting rotation.
That includes Urias, who enters the 2020 campaign without an innings cap. “It feels good,” he said of being earmarked to occupy a full-time spot in the Dodgers starting rotation.
“I’m really motivated coming into this season. Originally I had some expectations and they’ve had to be adjusted, but it’s not just me. My teammates as well. I’m excited to be back, I’m really motivated to be learning from my teammates.”
For Urias, learning early in Spring Training that he would contribute to the starting rotation this year was momentous. “Happy and motivated,” he described his feelings.
“It actually gives me a little bit of calmness, knowing that everything I’ve done I did it right. It’s something that I keep in mind whenever I talk to the trainers or anybody else to try to get ready for this season.”
On a personal level, Urias would love nothing more than to help the Dodgers end their World Series drought this season. “Just like any other season, it’s important and go out there with the mentality of trying to win the World Series,” he said. “No matter how long the season is, I’m going to try to help my team.”
While Urias is excited for the upcoming campaign, he will miss having Price in the Dodgers clubhouse. “I was really excited to be able to be at his side,” Urias said of Price opting out.
“I know he was an important piece coming in, but we support him and his family. We send our best wishes to them. I know it’s a difficult situation, but luckily we have some guys that can now get an opportunity because of it.”
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