It came as little surprise when the Dodgers recalled pitcher Javy Guerra from Triple-A Albuquerque on Tuesday.
Guerra was sent down late in spring training to pitch as a starter at Albuquerque. By his fourth start, he got stretched out to five innings and 75 pitches. The Dodgers needed a reliever who could pitch more than one inning after seeing Josh Wall — Albuquerque’s closer to begin the season — struggle in the long reliever role Monday.
Wall and Guerra swapped places Tuesday, and Guerra returned to a familiar building.
Well, mostly familiar. Once you walk down the tunnel leading into the home clubhouse area, things look a little different inside Dodger Stadium than they did last year.
“I got lost like three or four times,” Guerra said. “They told me ‘go to the weight room.’ It took me 10 minutes.” Continue reading →
Josh Wall sat in two bullpens Monday: The Albuquerque Isotopes’ by day and the Dodgers’ by night. (Associated Press photo)
For Josh Wall, the motivation to reach Dodger Stadium began long before he was cut in the final days of spring training.
“I had a mindset,” Wall said Tuesday. “Being up at the end of the season last year, I came in with the attitude of not just showing up to spring and seeing the numbers and saying, ‘I’m going to Albuquerque.’ I’m going to do everything I can to make the team. I just worked on things, got myself in really good shape. Worked on some things mechanically I’d been working on at the end of the season, ran with it and everything was feeling good.”
Dodgers pitcher Shawn Tolleson received an epidural injection in his lower back Monday. (Getty Images)
Shawn Tolleson pitched an inning Thursday afternoon in Albuquerque, New Mexico. That night, he and the Isotopes flew into Des Moines to play the Triple-A Iowa Cubs. Friday morning, the Dodgers called up Tolleson to pitch in that night’s game in Phoenix, Arizona.
“I had a crazy travel day,” he said.
Along the way, Tolleson’s lower back stiffened up. The adrenaline got him through 11 pitches against the Diamondbacks — he walked both batters he faced — but it couldn’t mask the pain in his back at night.
(Update: Beckett indeed threw a simulated game on the back field and reportedly passed the test with flying colors.)
In his place, Josh Wall will start against the Arizona Diamondbacks. The Dodgers will likely use a combination of relievers, including some minor-leaguers, to fill out the innings behind Wall, who hasn’t pitched more than 1 ⅔ innings in a Cactus League game this spring.
Today begins our daily countdown to pitchers and catchers reporting to Spring Training on Tuesday with a position-by-position breakdown of the Dodgers’ roster. We begin with the bullpen.
I didn’t include Aaron Harang, Chris Capuano or Ted Lilly on this list, even though one or more of them could wind up pitching out of the ‘pen. Even without them, this is a solid unit on paper with ample depth. The closer situation is fairly clear, but the Dodgers enter the season with more viable options for the ninth inning than they’ve had in recent seasons.
There are a few injury concerns facing this unit, but none are severe. With one exception, the Dodgers’ bullpen should start the season healthy, capable of becoming one of the best in the National League.
Josh Wall, Jerry Sands, Steven Ames, J.T. Wise, Ryan Acosta, Joc Pederson, Craig Stem, O’Koyea Dickson, Lindsey Caughel, Eric Smith, Jackson Mateo, Paul Hoenecke, Jose Diaz and Luis Alcantara were the minor-leaguers honored with Dodger Pride Awards in August, the team announced today.
The Dodger Pride Awards were created in 2008 by Ned Colletti, and are given on a monthly basis to the players at each level of the club’s minor league system who play the game with a “hustling, smart, aggressive style.” The players and staff on each respective club vote for the awards.
Right-handed reliever Josh Wall was recalled from for the third time this season from Triple-A Albuquerque and Javy Guerra was placed on the 15-day disabled list with a left oblique muscle strain retroactive to Sept. 3.
“He said it happened while he was warming up” before his last appearance on Sunday, Dodgers manager Don Mattingly said.
The Dodgers needed to move Guerra to the disabled list because Wall had been optioned to Triple-A within the last 10 days.
Guerra tossed a scoreless inning on Sunday in his only appearance since being recalled from Albuquerque and has not allowed a run in his last 10 outings (12.1 IP) dating to July 28. Overall, Guerra is 2-3 with eight saves and a 2.60 ERA in 45 games with the Dodgers.
Wall is 1-0 with an 11.57 ERA in three relief appearances. Since being optioned Aug. 30, Wall has made two scoreless appearances, including picking up the save in Albuquerque’s division-clinching win over Omaha on Sunday. With the Isotopes, Wall was selected to the All-Pacific Coast League team after leading the circuit with 28 saves and going 2-1 with a 4.53 ERA in 55 games.
“Javy, I was using kind of as a replacement with Jamey Wright. He kind of stepped into more of a later-inning situation,” Mattingly said. “Javy could go multiple innings. So that changes that. We brought up John Ely, who can step into that role. Josh Wall is more of a power, one-inning guy, but he’s pretty durable. I think Josh can help us.”
Right-hander Matt Guerrier was activated from the 60-day disabled list Thursday, ending a DL stay that began on April 19. He’s eligible to pitch tonight after missing 118 games with tendinitis in his right elbow.
In five rehabilitation outings for Single-A Rancho Cucamonga, Guerrier allowed three hits and two runs in five innings. He pitched a scoreless inning Monday for the Quakes. In seven appearances spanning 6 2/3 innings in May, Guerrier allowed two runs.
To make room for Guerrier on the active roster, Josh Wall was optioned to Triple-A Albuquerque. The right hander was 1-0 with an 11.57 ERA in three games.
To make room for Guerrier on the 40-man roster, Dee Gordon was transferred to the 60-day disabled list. Gordon, who hasn’t played since tearing a ligament in his right thumb July 5, will be eligible to return on Sept. 3.