(Photo Credit: mlb.com)
Triggered by a taxed bullpen and the need for an emergency starter, the Dodgers added right-hander Mike Bolsinger and lefty reliever Luis Avilan to the 25-man roster on Monday, and may be prepared to employ several other personnel changes as a number of players are on the doorstep of returning from injury.
After going 1-for-2 with a walk and a run scored for Single-A Rancho Cucamonga on Sunday, outfielder Scott Van Slyke will join Triple-A Oklahoma City on Tuesday to start the next leg of his rehab assignment.
Although nothing has been officially decided by the club, Eric Stephen of True Blue LA pointed out that Van Slyke could be activated as early as Friday in place of a reliever, when the Dodgers begin a three-game series against the Mets in New York.
Van Slyke has been on the disabled list since the first week of the season with lower back problems.
Southpaw starter Hyun-jin Ryu will join Van Slyke with the Oklahoma City squad this week, slotting into the starting rotation on Wednesday in the second game of the series with the Grizzlies at Fresno.
After being in Arizona since spring training rehabbing from shoulder surgery performed last year, Ryu has already made two rehab starts for Rancho, pitching two innings last Sunday and three on Friday.
If Ryu’s arm strength continues to progress, he will throw four innings on Wednesday, five frames on Monday in Sacramento, then five innings or more on June 4 in Round Rock.
It’s highly conceivable that the southpaw could rejoin the Dodgers’ starting rotation as early as June 10, when the team begins a three-game set in San Francisco.
Meanwhile, fireballer Frankie Montas made his first rehab appearance on Sunday for Double-A Tulsa, starting the game and throwing two full innings. The 23-year-old righty struck out two batters while allowing two hits, one of which was a solo home run.
Dodgers manager Dave Roberts repeated Sunday that Montas will build up his innings on a starter’s plan. If the club happens to need relief help on June 4 when he’s eligible to be activated, the team hasn’t necessarily ruled him out being added to the bullpen.
Montas’ velocity seems to be as good as ever, capturing the attention of many, including Roberts. (Hat tip to J.P. Hoornstra)
“I like hearing that he’s hitting 100,” Roberts said with a smile. “I like 100. A hundred is good. I think if you can throw 100 with good command, you can help any major-league club.”
In other injury news, Brandon McCarthy‘s throwing program has been put on hold after the righty reported some discomfort in his arm following a session of live batting practice last week.
McCarthy, who is recovering from Tommy John surgery administered early last season, is still on a timetable to return in early July despite the recent setback.
“He just didn’t feel right after his last session and is just taking a few days off from throwing,” Dodgers GM Farhan Zaidi said.
In addition, the Dodgers will be forced to make some type of decision with Alex Guerrero very soon, as the maximum time of his rehab work will be reached by the end of the week.
And Yimi Garcia still hasn’t picked up a baseball.
First pitch is slated for 7:10 p.m. local time.