With a season beginning in July looking likelier by the day, it’s time for some fun guessing games! Rumor has it that this season will feature expanded rosters as a way to keep guys fresh and healthy. If that’s the case, no team in baseball is better equipped to make the change than your boys in blue.
Let’s break down what a 30-man big league team could look like for the Dodgers.
A six-man rotation just makes sense for any team with depth this season. The biggest health concern in baseball is a pitcher’s arm, and what better way to protect them than by giving your starters an extra day of rest? In this scenario, I give the nod to Stripling as he is the most experienced starter they have left. Besides, he’s more than paid his dues.
Sticking with the theme of protecting arms, the bullpen will more than likely be expanded as well. A 10 man unit should be more than enough to keep guys fresh, and the Dodgers have their pick of the bunch here. The biggest asterisks are May and Gonsolin, obviously. If there is a minor league season still, you would want them to get their reps in as starters. However, with it looking more and more likely that the minor league season will be canceled, some time in the majors wouldn’t hurt them. Another potential issue is the lack of lefties out of the pen. Adam Kolarek would be a great option here, but he would need to be stretched out instead of being a one batter specialist. Still, with such a lefty dominant rotation, it’s not out of the question that the bullpen be right heavy.
This is really just a solid group of all-around players, yes even Pollock. He could see the majority of his time at the DH if he stays healthy in this shortened year. While Hernandez and Taylor can play all over the field, a majority of their playing time could come in spot starts at one of the outfield positions.
The biggest beneficiary of expanded rosters could well be Matt Beaty. While he was a solid bench player for LA last season, Taylor and Hernandez are still above him in the pecking order. The depth that the Dodgers have could limit the action for Rios, but he would be a big bat off of the bench in pinch-hit opportunities and spot starts.
A bench consisting of Pollock, Taylor, Hernandez, Barnes, Beaty, and Rios would be incredible to say the least. With at least one of those names being included in the lineup as a DH, the Dodgers would have tough outs 1 through 9 in the lineup. While there is no official announcement yet, teams must begin preparing for the likely return to action at a moments notice. Regardless of how the divisions are laid out, I would hate to be the teams that have to face our boys this season.