Already needing to find a replacement for Brett Anderson in the starting rotation as the left-hander will miss the next three to five months after undergoing back surgery for a bulging disk, the Los Angeles Dodgers have worked a small juggling act with their starting pitchers in recent days.
Then with the Dodgers scheduled for split-squad games against the Chicago Cubs and Seattle Mariners, Alex Wood was scratched due to left forearm soreness. Brandon Beachy, originally slated to face the Mariners, started in Wood’s place against the Cubs.
Carlos Frias made his first start of the spring as he was tapped to replace Beachy. On Sunday, Dodgers manager Dave Roberts announced Scott Kazmir will pitch in a B game on a back field at Camelback Ranch.
Kazmir was scheduled to start Monday’s game against the Milwaukee Brewers. The Dodgers will instead send Mike Bolsinger to the hill, per Ken Gurnick of MLB.com:
Mike Bolsinger starts Monday.
— Ken Gurnick (@kengurnick) March 13, 2016
According to Alanna Rizzo of SportsNet LA, Bolsinger will throw four innings or 60 pitches in his first start of 2016 Spring Training:
— Alanna Rizzo (@alannarizzo) March 14, 2016
Bolsinger has made two relief appearances this spring, allowing a combined two runs, walking two and collecting four strikeouts over five innings pitched. He went 6-6 with a 3.62 ERA and 1.36 WHIP in 21 starts for the Dodgers last season.
Bolsinger was 3-1 with a 1.05 ERA in four May starts (25.2 innings pitched). He slowed a bit in June and July, but was still effective (4.40 ERA and 1.47 WHIP in June, and 3.00 ERA and 1.30 WHIP in July).
After the Dodgers acquired Mat Latos and Wood in a three-team trade, they sent Bolsinger back to Triple-A Oklahoma City. Upon returning to the Majors in September, Bolsinger went 1-3 with a 7.08 ERA, 8.35 FIP and 1.91 WHIP, while allowing eight home runs in five starts (20.1 innings pitched) over the final month of the regular season.
In 10 games (eight starts) with the OKC Dodgers, Bolsinger was 3-3 with a 2.31 ERA and 1.03 WHIP. He said recently the poor showing in September is serving as motivation moving forward.
The 28 year old is among the multiple pitchers competing for the fifth spot in the Dodgers’ rotation.