Besides the discussions about how close the Dodgers and the Braves are for home-field advantage throughout the National league playoffs, one other hot topic gaining momentum is which players will be included on the Los Angeles NLDS roster to begin the postseason.
It isn’t an overwhelming number of players, but the first wave of September roster reinforcements has arrived in Arizona ahead of the series finale against the Diamondbacks on Sunday.
Beginning in 2020, the rules will change as far as roster expansion goes in September. The new regulation will allow a club to carry just 28 players on its expanded roster as opposed to the full 40 permitted by today’s rules. This should make for some interesting conjecture, especially with the Dodgers, who annually like to give many regulars prescribed rest periods down the stretch run of the season.
The Dodgers on Saturday announced the first wave of their expanded roster, recalling infielder/catcher Kyle Farmer, infielder/outfielder Tim Locastro and outfielders Andrew Toles and Alex Verdugo from Triple-A Oklahoma City, while activating infielder David Freese and right-handed pitcher Ryan Madson. Los Angeles also reinstated left-handed pitcher Zac Rosscup and infielder Chase Utley from the 10-day disabled list.
Considering that the Dodgers were unable to significantly upgrade their bullpen ahead of the non-waiver trade deadline at the end of July, many folks close to the club believed that a waiver trade was inevitable, especially after Kenley Jansen‘s stint on the disabled list and the inability of anybody else to successfully close out a game. Yet, with the waiver deadline arriving at the end of the week, there hasn’t been much noise indicating that the team is close to completing such a deal.
Our beloved Dodgers need to look back to July.
At this point last week, many followers of the Dodgers were beginning to show signs of concern for a major collapse in the standings, yet many close to the team who knew a little bit about mathematical probability simply shrugged off the slump as a common occurrence which could happen to any contending squad.
“Are you nervous?” my husband asks me before the Dodgers game. “Not yet,” I reply. I rattle off a number of reasons why not, that this isn’t the batting order that worked so beautifully earlier in the season, that the pitchers who got demolished in Arizona did really well against the same team the second go-round, Kershaw is on the mound.