This Day In Dodgers History: Julio Urías Makes MLB Debut

On May 27, 2016, Julio Urías took the mound at Citi Field for his MLB debut with the Los Angeles Dodgers.

At 19 years, 289 days old, Urías became the first teenager to pitch in a game for the Dodgers since Fernando Valenzuela made his MLB debut out of the bullpen at 19 years, 319 days old on Sept. 15, 1980.

What’s more, Urías was the youngest pitcher in the Majors since Felix Hernandez made his MLB debut with the Seattle Mariners in 2005.

Urías was the top Dodgers pitching prospect at the time and had a streak of 27 consecutive scoreless innings for Triple-A Oklahoma City upon getting called up. He additionally led the Pacific Coast League with a 1.10 ERA and 0.78 WHIP.

Urías’ debut with the Dodgers was what was to be expected from a young pitcher. He flashed signs of the promise that made him a top prospect in baseball but also experienced some nerves that impacted command.

The Mets placed Urías under further pressure with a patient approach at the plate, forcing him to locate in the zone. None of the 17 batters Urías faced swung at the first pitch, and he started only four of them with a first-pitch strike.

Urías was chased in the third inning, exiting with the Dodgers trailing 3-1 and the bases loaded. Despite the mixed results, Urías understandably said it was a night he would never forget.

Urías went 5-2 with a 3.39 ERA and 1.46 WHIP over 18 games (15 starts) with the Dodgers during the 2016 season. He effectively lost 2017 and 2018 due anterior capsule surgery on his left shoulder, and thus didn’t become a full-time starter for L.A. until 2020.

Of course, that was a shortened season, which made 2021 the first year Urías took on a full workload in the Dodgers rotation. He led the Majors that season with 20 wins.

Despite not yet having much experience, Urías was on the playoff roster for the 2016 National League Division Series, both because of his talent and poise on the mound. The left-hander made his postseason debut against the Washington Nationals in Game 5, throwing two shutout innings.

Urías, two months removed from turning 20 years old, became the youngest pitcher in Dodgers postseason history.

Julio Urías Dodgers’ career ended due to off-field issues

Urías was arrested on September 6, 2023 on suspicion of domestic violence. It was the second time Urías has been arrested with the first being a domestic battery case that led MLB to suspend him.

He was placed on administrative leave while the investigation was underway and never returned to the Dodgers’ active roster for the remainder of the 2023 season.

MLB hasn’t yet to issue a suspension for Urías, and the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office announced he wouldn’t be facing felony charges. But following his May 2 arraignment hearing, he’s facing lesser charges.

Urías remains a free agent and his MLB career is likely over.

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