Dave Roberts: Michael Grove’s Role With Dodgers ‘Not Really Clear’

Prior to their Freeway Series finale against the Los Angeles Angels, the Los Angeles Dodgers recalled Michael Grove from Triple-A Oklahoma City. He was optioned last week but remained with the team on their taxi squad amid a likely need for a starter.

Grove was initially expected to start against the Angels on Wednesday, but the Dodgers opted for a bullpen game instead. “Right now he is available in the ‘pen,” manager Dave Roberts said of Grove’s role with the team before the matchup.

“We’ll see how tonight goes and that will kind of let us know how we’re going to use him on Friday, potentially out of the ‘pen with Sheehan starting. Going forward, I don’t think that it’s really clear right now. It’s really not clear, but I expect to get him in there and use him in the right way.”

Brusdar Graterol was utilized as an opener against the Angels in what turned out to be a more traditional bullpen game. Grove did not fill a bulk role after previously doing so against the Philadelphia Phillies.

“We talked about it [Tuesday] night,” Roberts explained of Grove’s role changing. “I had a conversation with Michael and just said we don’t know what we’re going to do. And then kind of thinking about it today, I let (Phil) Nevin know we’re going to use a bullpen day.

“Then it was just more of trying to map out potential ways the game could go and which guys you want to use. With the off day, we’ve got (Emmet) Sheehan going Friday and we’ve also got Michael to cover us if we need to.”

Grove last pitched for the Dodgers on June 15, when he allowed four runs on seven hits in five innings of work against the Chicago White Sox. He has posted an 0-2 record with an 8.10 ERA and 1.60 WHIP across seven games (six starts) this season.

Michael Grove replaced Shelby Miller

Grove replaced Shelby Miller on the Dodgers’ active roster, who was placed on the 15-day injured list with neck pain. Miller coincidentally last pitched on June 15 against the White Sox and threw two scoreless innings with two strikeouts.

It’s plausible Grove could be asked to fill a multi-inning role out of the bullpen, as Miller occasionally did.

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