Determined to continue providing their starters with an extra day of rest heading into the All-Star break but already having used Ross Stripling to fill in for Rich Hill, the Los Angeles Dodgers selected the contract of Tony Gonsolin so he could face the Arizona Diamondbacks.
The call-up was the first of Gonsolin’s career, and his MLB debut came against a team that entered play 13 games behind the Dodgers in the National League West standings. The right-hander had a rough indoctrination, as the Diamondbacks put up a four-run first inning.
The Dodgers didn’t do Gonsolin any favors, committing three errors behind the rookie. Of the six runs Arizona scored, four were earned.
Aside from the Dodgers losing their first series since being swept by the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim from June 10-11, Gonsolin enjoyed making his MLB debut, according to Jorge Castillo of the L.A. Times:
“Results were not the best, obviously, but my takeaway was that it was a lot of fun,” Gonsolin said. “It was a first for me in a lot of aspects and you can always get better.”
If there was one undeniable highlight, it came in the third inning when Gonsolin, a former outfielder, looked comfortable with the bat as he lined a leadoff base hit up the middle.
The 25-year-old was selected by the Dodgers in the ninth round of the 2016 Draft, and this year was his first time pitching at the Triple-A level. Gonsolin was sidelined for six weeks because of an oblique strain but went 1-1 with a 2.77 ERA in eight starts prior to joining the Dodgers.
It’s unclear if Gonsolin will remain with the club for another time through the rotation, but he doesn’t figure to factor into their long-term plans quite yet. Including Wednesday’s game, the right-hander has yet to throw more than five innings in a single start.
Nonetheless, it’s possible Gonsolin is more of a factor later in the season, as Dodgers president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman previously did not rule out he, along with Dustin May, are utilized out of the bullpen.
Gonsolin went a combined 10-2 with a 2.60 ERA for High-A Rancho Cucamonga and Double-A Tulsa. He was named the Dodgers’ Minor League Pitcher of the Year.