Dodgers Spring Training: Clayton Kershaw Starting Against Giants; Alex Wood Pitching In Minor League Game

The Los Angeles Dodgers played nearly a full week’s worth of Cactus League games before getting Clayton Kershaw and Walker Buehler on the mound, and Monday will see David Price and Julio Urias make their respective debuts in 2020 Spring Training.

With a deep collection of starters, it’s required a bit of a juggling act. Alex Wood, who started in his first Cactus League game, pitched in relief of Kershaw against the Milwaukee Brewers last Friday.

Urias, identified by Dodgers president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman and manager Dave Roberts as the club’s fourth starter, is also poised to appear out of the bullpen Monday.

The Dodgers have their first off day of Spring Training on Tuesday, and when they return to the field, it’ll be Kershaw facing the San Francisco Giants and Wood bumped to a Minor League game at Camelback Ranch, according to Ken Gurnick of

Alex Wood will pitch in a Minor League game Wednesday afternoon. Clayton Kershaw starts Wednesday night.

— Ken Gurnick (@kengurnick) March 2, 2020

Kershaw had four strikeouts and issued two walks over 1.2 hitless innings in his debut. After retiring the side in order in the first inning, he fought a high pitch count and failed to make it through the second. More importantly, Kershaw reiterated his health is in good standing.

It’s not uncommon for the Dodgers — or any club — to send an established player to participate in a ‘B’ game, but it likely robs Wood of the opportunity to face Major League hitters in his third game of the spring.

The left-hander is competing with the likes of Tony Gonsolin and Ross Stripling for the fifth spot in the rotation, which Wood presumably has an inside track for. Dustin May and Jimmy Nelson were also part of the equation but both have been shut down due to injuries.

In Wood’s eyes, he’s already secured the role. “I love these guys and I love this place, but I wouldn’t have taken the risk of coming back without knowing that when Opening Day comes around, I wouldn’t be in the starting rotation,” Wood recently said.

“I don’t know the semantics of everything else or what’s been said. I came back here knowing I’m going to be in the rotation and we’re going to go from there. Once the season starts, things can change. You have to perform, but I came back here fully cemented in the rotation.”

Roberts followed it with, “We signed Alex to be a starter. That’s where we want his mindset to be anyway. Guys are still going out there and there’s always competition. Whatever we have on whatever date this is, guys still have to go out there and compete.

“Whether it’s against themselves or a spot, whatever it might be. We have a lot of guys we view as Major League starters. That’s sort of where we’re at right now.”

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