Could Julio Urias be the bullpen help the Dodgers need for October?

first_img“Yes, you get some added adrenaline when you see Kenley (Jansen) or Pedro (Baez) come in with a runner on second or Scott Alexander when he was here and when he comes back, it does get you going,” Urias said of pitching in a high-leverage role out of the bullpen (as he did last fall, making seven appearances in the NLCS and World Series). “But you just wait until your name is called and do the role that is given to you and try to do your job.”HILL WORKFour weeks after leaving his last start with a flexor tendon injury in his left elbow, Rich Hill will take the first steps in a throwing program Thursday by playing catch from 45 feet.Hill received a platelet-rich plasma injection after the injury was diagnosed and has been limited in his activity since then, allowing the tendon to heal.“I know it will go well,” Hill said of his catch session Thursday. “That’s just kind of the way it goes. You have to go through the process.”Related Articles Cody Bellinger homer gives Dodgers their first walkoff win of season PHILADELPHIA — Julio Urias has learned to like his new job.“Yeah, of course. The goal is always to be with this team and to help this team. And honestly, I do like it,” he said through an interpreter.“It’s not like they use me in high-leverage situations where I’m coming in with runners on second and third. They do use me for two or three innings which might help a bullpen that might be used a lot in the days previous or to save the bullpen for future days. You know you can contribute that way. It’s something that I enjoy doing.”It’s something he has done very well. In 16 relief appearances since being moved out of the starting rotation, Urias has a 1.76 ERA and 0.88 WHIP while holding batters to a .165 average. There is no confusion about Urias’ long-term role. He will be a starting pitcher. In the short term, though, Urias could be a very valuable weapon in the second half and postseason for a Dodgers’ bullpen that has been unable to find a reliable left-handed reliever – let alone one capable of shutting down both right-handed and left-handed batters.“Yeah, absolutely,” Dodgers manager Dave Roberts acknowledged. “It’s nice to have that optionality with Julio, who can do either role.”Roberts also acknowledged that Urias’ fate could be decided by the moves the Dodgers make – or don’t make – between now and the July 31 trade deadline. If the front office is unable to address their bullpen needs by adding a lefty reliever, Urias could find himself pitching out of the ’pen the rest of the season. He might be there during the postseason regardless.Asked when Urias might be moved back to the rotation, Roberts said that was “an end-of-August conversation – but a lot can happen.”What could happen is Urias evolves into the kind of bullpen weapon the Cleveland Indians had in Andrew Miller during their run to the 2016 World Series. Miller made 10 appearances that fall, pitching more than an inning each time and posting a 1.40 ERA and striking out 30 in 19-1/3 innings. Hill is not projected to return until September and knows the throwing program is going to be a long, slow process of building up.“It’ll be, play catch, day off, play catch, day off,” Hill said.MUNCY HONOREDMax Muncy was named the Dodgers’ 2019 Heart and Hustle Award winner which recognizes players who “demonstrate a passion for the game of baseball and best embody the values, spirit and traditions of the game.”A winner is selected from each team by committees of former players with relationships to those teams. Alumni and active players will vote for one overall winner from the 30 team winners.UP NEXTDodgers (RHP Kenta Maeda, 7-6, 3.82 ERA) at Phillies (RHP Nick Pivetta, 4-4, 5.81 ERA), Wednesday, 4:05 p.m. SportsNet LA (where available), ESPN Radio, 570 AM Fire danger is on Dave Roberts’ mind as Dodgers head to San Francisco center_img Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error Dodgers’ Max Muncy trying to work his way out of slow start Dodgers hit seven home runs, sweep Colorado Rockies How Dodgers pitcher Ross Stripling topped the baseball podcast empire last_img

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