With just over one month remaining in the regular season, the Los Angeles Dodgers hope to welcome back reinforcements for the pitching staff in September, with Tony Gonsolin among those working toward a return.
Gonsolin was placed on the 10-day injured list on July 31 due to right shoulder inflammation. It was the same injury that caused him to miss the first 60 games of the season. Gonsolin was activated off the 60-day IL in June and struggled to provide much length or pitch with consistent command.
Like Clayton Kershaw, he was shut down for a period of time before beginning a throwing program. Gonsolin built up to a bullpen last week and on Wednesday faced Mookie Betts in a simulated game at Dodger Stadium.
“Tony is doing well. He had an up and down [Wednesday], so I think a total of 25 pitches and used his whole mix,” Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said.
“It was one inning, sat down, faced Mookie another time for another five pitches. I would assume now he’ll throw a bullpen in two or three days, and then get back on the mound for a simulated, two-plus situation. Then we’ll see where he is, but good day for Tony.”
Gonsolin is 2-1 with a 2.78 ERA but has only managed to log at least five innings in two of 10 games (nine starts) this season. He made mention of lingering shoulder discomfort after recording just five outs against the Arizona Diamondbacks on July 30.
“It has its days where it doesn’t feel great but for the most part it feels good on game day,” Gonsolin said at the time. “I’m not going to take it out of the mix (as reason for inconsistent command), but it’s no excuse to not throw strikes.”
Dodgers’ plan for Gonsolin
Although time may not allow for it, Roberts previously indicated the team intended to stretch out Gonsolin as a starting pitcher — like with Kershaw and Cole Hamels.
Roberts more recently conceded time remaining in the regular season may not allow for that with Kershaw. That presumably applies to Gonsolin as well, and of course Hamels’ comeback ended before it began because of a left shoulder injury.
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