Dave Roberts Explains Yoshinobu Yamamoto Starting With Triceps Tightness

Yoshinobu Yamamoto started against the Kansas City Royals on Saturday with two extra days of rest, but lasted just two innings before being removed due to right triceps tightness.

Yamamoto did not allow a run, but struggled with his command as only 14 of his 28 pitches were strikes. The right-hander’s fastball topped out at 95.9 mph, but his velocity was down an average of 1.4 mph.

Yamamoto’s start was pushed back two days partly because of right triceps soreness that emerged after throwing a season-high 106 pitches against the New York Yankees.

“As far as the soreness, after that start, a couple days after, felt sore, or he said there was some soreness. We pushed him back, pushed Tyler (Glasnow) back, and he said he felt good enough to go,” Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said of the decision to still start Yamamoto.

“There’s communication all the time with our pitchers, as far as there’s soreness all the time. In a season, they’re going to be sore. And so at that point in time, obviously he felt, we felt, he can make the start.

“We wouldn’t pitch him if we felt he was going to put himself in harm’s way. And so after that second inning, he just felt that he could go out there, but it just wasn’t coming out. His tricep was tight, and so that’s when we pulled the plug.”

There were reports that Yamamoto informed Dodgers pitching coaches of tightness during warmups, but Roberts had no knowledge of the more potentially serious injury. “No, no, no. I didn’t know,” Roberts began.

“He had soreness. From what I understood, he had soreness during the week. Tyler’s going to have soreness during the week, and they get through it, they pitch and they make their starts.

“I knew he had soreness, that’s why we pushed him back, but again, I didn’t know until the second inning that he couldn’t go back out there for the third inning. And so again, if we would have known that he couldn’t pitch, we would have done something about it, but we just didn’t know.”

When asked if it was possible something got lost in translation, Roberts maintained that he did not know Yamamoto had been dealing with the triceps injury.

“I knew that he was sore going into the start. I didn’t feel that there was any soreness or putting him in harm’s way today. So I don’t see how that’s a lost in translation,” Roberts said.

“I do feel that, if he feels that he can make a start, and when he’s in it, feels like he can’t perform the way he’s capable of, to let us know, which I certainly appreciate. But there was nothing that we heard, even from the coaching staff and myself, that felt he shouldn’t make this start today. There was nothing.”

Yamamoto admitted he felt some discomfort when warming up but thought he could pitch through it.

“I did have tightness, and I was very aware, but that it was not that serious at that point,” Yamamoto said through interpreter Yoshihiro Sonoda after the game.

Yoshinobu Yamamoto on injured list

Of greater concern now for the Dodgers is Yamamoto was put on the 15-day injured list because of a right rotator cuff strain. He’s expected to be shut down from throwing for multiple weeks but return at some point this season.

Have you subscribed to the Dodger Blue YouTube channel? Be sure to ring the notification bell to watch player interviews, participate in shows and giveaways, and stay up to date on all Dodgers news and rumors!