The Los Angeles Dodgers have been without Daniel Hudson all season and Julio Urías since May 20, but could soon welcome back both to a pitching staff that has been decimated by injuries.
Without Urías, Dustin May, Ryan Pepiot, Noah Syndergaard and Walker Buehler, the list of arms on the injured list is much of what continues to plague the starting rotation. The bullpen is a tough spot as well, taking a considerable step back in performance across the board.
The Dodgers have called up rookies Bobby Miller, Gavin Stone, and Emmet Sheehan from their Minor League ranks, to provide a boost. Miller and Sheehan being the most productive of the bunch.
Meanwhile, Urías has continued to make positive steps while recovering from lingering tightness in his left hamstring, and Dodgers manager Dave Roberts believes Hudson is on a similar track to return during a series against the Kansas City Royals.
“I think it’s very realistic that Julio, the thought is potentially making a start in Kansas City,” Roberts said. “With Huddy, I think that Kansas City series is when he’ll arrive as well.”
The reliance on young arms isn’t a sustainable model to follow, regardless if the upside is immense, such as with Dodgers prospects. However, as they saw with Stone, not all potential pans out with immediate returns.
Urías, when at his best, is one of the top starters in baseball. Urías’ 2022 season was the best of his career, posting a 17-7 record with a 2.16 ERA and a .199 batting average allowed.
Urías hasn’t been able to replicate that success this year, his return would still be a needed boon to the Dodgers rotation. Urías checked off another box when he pitched multiple innings of live batting practice on Tuesday, facing Max Muncy and Miguel Vargas at Angel Stadium.
How Daniel Hudson can help Dodgers bullpen
The Dodgers desperately need some stability in the bullpen, and Hudson is someone who undoubtedly has the capability to do so. In 2022 prior to tearing the ACL in his left knee, Hudson posted a 2.22 ERA in 24.1 innings pitched.
On the season, the Dodgers bullpen owns a collective 5.04 ERA, the worst mark among all National League teams. Their .260 batting average allowed is the highest in baseball, and the group is responsible for blowing a number of leads in recent weeks.
Without a clear-cut closer, the only consistent and viable option has been Evan Phillips. The downside to not having pieces around Phillips, is the need for stable performances to get him the ball, which the Dodgers don’t have much of at present time.
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