Originally published by DodgerBlue.com
Who was going to be part of the Los Angeles Dodgers Opening Day rotation had been known for more than one week, but how Clayton Kershaw, Julio Urias, Tony Gonsolin and Andrew Heaney would slot in behind Walker Buehler wasn’t announced until the eve of the regular season beginning.
In what was a mild surprise, Gonsolin — not Kershaw or Urias — was tabbed to start against the Colorado Rockies in the second game of the Opening Series at Coors Field. Urias is taking the ball Sunday, and Kershaw isn’t making his 2022 debut until Wednesday.
Gonsolin’s start marked the beginning of a key year not only on an individual level but also for the team. If the 27-year-old is able to remain healthy and pitch well it will help stabilize a Dodgers starting rotation that has questions at the backend.
After pitching to mixed results in the Dodgers’ 3-2 loss, Gonsolin came away generally pleased with his outing, via SportsNet LA:
“Happy to get the first one out of the way. Body felt great, even in Colorado, so that’s a good sign. Threw too many pitches early, a lot of waisted stuff, but overall pretty happy with it.”
Gonsolin had some control issues early and it led to the Rockies taking a lead in the first inning. Though, he very easily could have stranded back-to-back singles and kept Colorado off the board if Austin Barnes didn’t lose control of the ball after fielding a strike from Mookie Betts.
Instead, Ryan McMahon’s two-out base hit to right field scored Kris Bryant from second base.
Gonsolin faced more traffic in the second inning but escaped the jam and ran a string of three consecutive strikeouts. He also stranded a double in the third inning, which wound up being Gonsolin’s last.
The short outing could be traced to a shortened Spring Training period, high pitch count, limited effectiveness and the Dodgers’ preference to have Tyler Anderson enter a game at the start of an inning.
Gonsolin feeling healthy
Coming off a season in which he twice dealt with right shoulder trouble, Gonsolin said during Spring Training he was healthy and encouraged by the results of a throwing program.
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