Seventeen innings later, what’s new?
By Jon Weisman
Here’s a quick update on some of the Dodger newsmakers over the past 24 hours …
Getting optioned to the minors after winning Sunday’s game didn’t shock Stripling, who told SportsNet LA’s Alanna Rizzo that it was always the plan that he would be optioned around this time — though certainly current circumstances made the decision more obvious.
Stripling added that the plan is for him to throw three innings when he starts for Triple-A Oklahoma City, according to Andy McCullough of the Times.
Dave Roberts said that Stripling could be used in the rotation or out of the bullpen when he returns to Los Angeles.
Ideally, Bolsinger will start Tuesday’s game against the Reds. However, with the Dodgers thin in the bullpen tonight, Bolsinger is essentially the long/emergency reliever — if needed, the Dodgers would have to regroup yet again for Tuesday.
Like Stripling, Bolsinger is another potential reliever down the road. “What Mike can do with spinning the baseball is something that our guys in the bullpen don’t have — (the ability) to throw a true curveball,” Roberts said.
After catching all 17 innings Sunday, Ellis reported that his body was “good to go” today. With Yasmani Grandal less than 100 percent, Clayton Kershaw on the mound for the Dodgers and left-hander Brandon Finnegan throwing for the Reds, the decision to start Ellis together came together rather quickly.
Grandal’s sore ankle is improving, Roberts said, but blocking, throwing and running would still be something of a challenge for him tonight, Roberts said. However, Grandal is available to pinch-hit and even to catch if necessary.
Tsao told the Dodgers on Sunday morning he had the sore triceps that has now sent him to the disabled list. That was too late for the Dodgers to make a move that would have given them a chance to replace him before what turned out to be a marathon. He was almost used anyway, as a pinch-runner had Grandal reached base when he pinch-hit in extra innings.
Everyone kind of had a feeling Utley was having a special day on defense Sunday. Turns out that was completely true. Utley’s 13 assists tied a Los Angeles Dodger record for most assists in a single game at any position.
Like Randolph, Utley almost had an unprecedented double-double, combining his 13 assists with nine plate appearances.
Roberts was asked if he had ever been part of a game like Sunday’s.
“I think that if you dissect those innings, where you’re starting off with a no-hitter through four, and you’ve got the unfortunate thing with the umpire, with David Rackley (getting hurt), and you look at some of the plays that transpired, for 17 innings, you use your best pitcher to pinch-hit, some of the plays that Chase (Utley) made, the execution that didn’t come to fruition that we all know about, no.”
“I will say this. Yesterday, when you asked guys to give a little bit more, which we did, and for them to respond, was good to see.”