Spring Training Preview: Michael Busch Makes 2022 Debut As Dodgers Host Cubs

The Los Angeles Dodgers enter their third Spring Training game of 2022 still looking for their first win after tying with the Milwaukee Brewers and losing to the Seattle Mariners over the past two days.

Robbie Erlin starts for L.A. in his Dodgers debut after being signed as a Minor League free agent during the MLB lockout in February.

The 31-year-old southpaw has pitched at the Major League level over parts of seven seasons. His most recent action came in 2020 with the Atlanta Braves when he posted an 8.49 ERA, 6.75 FIP and 1.46 WHIP over 23.1 innings (seven games, five starts).

Erlin has spent the majority of his career with the San Diego Padres, where he pitched from 2013-16 and again from 2018-19. In 339.2 career innings, he owns a 4.85 ERA, but his 3.79 FIP suggests he has been better than his ERA shows.

While Erlin faces an uphill battle to make the roster, he is looking to prove he can be quality rotation depth to potentially make starts during the season for L.A. or change organizations and take a rotation spot somewhere else. He is expected to start the season with Triple-A Oklahoma City.

Also scheduled to pitch today for the Dodgers are Carson Fulmer, Evan Phillips, Justin Bruihl and Yency Almonte.

Michael Busch, one of the Dodgers’ top prospects and a consensus top-100 prospect in baseball, makes his spring debut while starting at second base.

Busch, in his second professional season in the Dodgers organization, hit .267/.386/.484 with 27 doubles, 20 home runs and 67 RBI over 107 games with Double-A Tulsa.

Also in the lineup is Jason Martin, who has already homered in the team’s first two games

Martin, 26, was selected by the Houston Astros in the eighth round of the 2013 MLB Draft and signed to a Minor League deal by the Dodgers this offseason. He appeared in 58 games for the Texas Rangers last season, batting .208/.248/.354 with three doubles, six home runs and 17 RBI over 154 plate appearances..

The Cubs give the start to Alex Mills, who posted a 5.07 ERA and 4.49 FIP in 119 innings across 32 games (20 starts). The 30-year-old right-hander owns a career 4.60 ERA in 238.2 innings.

Dodgers lineup

DH: Chris Taylor
3B: Justin Turner
LF: AJ Pollock
C: Will Smith
1B: Matt Beaty
SS: Zach McKinstry
RF: Jason Martin
2B: Michael Busch
CF: James Outman
P: Robbie Erlin

Cubs lineup

CF: Rafael Ortega
SS: Nico Hoerner
1B: Frank Schwindel
DH: Clint Frazier
C: Yan Gomes
LF: Nelson Velazquez
2B: Ildermaro Vargas
3B: Dixon Machado
RF: Greg Deichmann
P: Alex Mills

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