Dodgers News: Dave Roberts Cautiously Optimistic Julio Urias Can Contribute Out Of...

Dodgers News: Dave Roberts Cautiously Optimistic Julio Urias Can Contribute Out Of Bullpen

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Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

The Los Angeles Dodgers pitching staff was reinforced with the recent returns of Walker Buehler and Pedro Baez, and additional help could soon be on the way as a quartet of pitchers work their way back from the disabled list.

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Relievers Tony Cingrani and Josh Fields are slowly making progress in their respective recoveries, though the former may have a faster track back to the Majors. Moreover, Hyun-Jin Ryu is completing simulated games as he works to return from a groin strain.

Another wild card that could soon enter the mix is Julio Urias, who has been sidelined since undergoing season-ending shoulder surgery last July. He is nearing a Minor League rehab assignment, and depending on health and results, could rejoin the Dodgers in short order.

Dodgers manager Dave Roberts is excited about the prospect of Urias returning as a reliever this season, though did express some caution, via Ken Gurnick of MLB.com:

“We don’t know what we’re going to get,” Roberts said of Urias, “but I will say that in the postseason of ’16, and his first taste of the big leagues and what he did — the heartbeat, the stuff — to get him back in a short stint is something we feel comfortable we can bet on. We’re all excited for this.”

Because of the timing aspect, Urias is only being built up to throw three innings per outing. Beyond time, that path makes more sense for Urias considering the Dodgers’ crowded rotation.

Urias has Major League experience as both a starter and reliever, so he would add further versatility to the club’s pitching staff, similar to that of Caleb Ferguson, Kenta Maeda, Ross Stripling and Alex Wood.

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