The Los Angeles Dodgers got some bad news on Mother’s Day.
The team with the best record in the National League will be without two key relief pitchers for the considerable future according to Dodgers’ manager Dave Roberts.
Ahead of their Sunday Night Baseball showdown with the Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field on Mother’s Day, Roberts told reporters that both Blake Treinen and Victor Gonzalez will likely be out until at least the All-Star break.
Treinen has been dealing with shoulder discomfort and has not pitched in a game since April 14. Originally, Roberts said Treinen’s throwing arm was “barking” and he just needed a few days off. A few days turned into two weeks, and Roberts told reporters on Saturday in Chicago that Treinen was still in Los Angeles and expected to undergo an MRI on Monday.
That changed less than 24 hours later, when Roberts told reporters on Sunday before the series finale that the former All-Star reliever will no longer get an MRI on his shoulder and instead has opted to rest and rehabilitate the injury and would be out until at least the All-Star break.
After the departure of longtime closer Kenley Jansen to the Atlanta Braves in the offseason, Treinen entered the 2022 season expected to fill the void. However, just days before the season began, the Dodgers traded outfielder A.J. Pollock to the Chicago White Sox for veteran closer Craig Kimbrel. That move now looks meteoric after Sunday’s announcement.
In three seasons with the Dodgers, Treinen is 10-9 with a 2.50 ERA and 112 strikeouts and 33 walks.
Right-hander Tommy Kahnle, who was activated off the IL last week, is expected to see more opportunities in high-leverage spots in Treinen’s absence.
Meanwhile, another reliever that was an integral part of the Dodgers’ World Series run in 2020 will also be out for the foreseeable future.
Left-hander Victor Gonzalez, who started the season on the injured list with elbow inflammation, will undergo arthroscopic surgery in Los Angeles next week and is expected to be out at least four-to-six weeks according to Roberts.
Treinen and Gonzalez are two of a total of nine players on the Dodgers’ injured list. They join Mitch White (COVID-19), David Price (COVID-19), Jimmy Nelson (Elbow), Dustin May (Elbow), Danny Duffy (arm), Caleb Ferguson (elbow), and Andrew Heaney (shoulder). All the players on the Dodgers’ injured list are pitchers.
On the bright side, Roberts said Heaney, the team’s fifth starter in the rotation to begin the season, has started to “turn the corner” and will begin a throwing program on Monday.
The Dodgers will likely place both Treinen and Gonzalez on the 60-day IL retroactively, opening up two spots on the 40-man roster for more pitching help.
The NL west leaders are currently in the midst of a stretch of 31 games in 30 days and Roberts told reporters on Sunday that the team could call up either Robbie Erlin, Andrew Jackson, or Ryan Pepiot as a potential sixth starter to pitch on Wednesday in Pittsburgh. Jackson and Erlin are both currently on the 40-man roster, Pepiot is not, but as previously mentioned either Gonzalez or Treinen could be moved to the 60-day IL to make room.
After finishing up a three-game series at Wrigley Field on Sunday, the Dodgers will travel to Pittsburgh for a three-game series with the Pirates before heading back to Los Angeles for an eight-game homestand beginning on Thursday.