The Dodgers are planning to reinstate right-hander Tony Gonsolin from the 10-day injured list to start tomorrow afternoon’s game against the Cardinals, manager Dave Roberts told reporters (including Juan Toribio of MLB.com). The 27-year-old hasn’t pitched in a big league game since July 30 because of inflammation in his throwing shoulder.
It has been an injury-plagued year for Gonsolin, who also missed the first couple months of the season with shoulder inflammation. Seeing the promising hurler sidelined by successive shoulder problems was a bit alarming, but it’s a welcome sign that he’s healthy enough to contribute to the Dodgers’ efforts down the stretch.
Gonsolin hasn’t yet carved out a permanent spot in what has generally been a loaded Dodgers rotation in recent seasons. That depth has been thinned out this year, although the forthcoming returns of Gonsolin and Clayton Kershaw (who could make it back himself within the next few days) should go a long way to fortifying that group. When healthy, Gonsolin has been highly effective throughout his career. He owns a 2.65 ERA over 122 1/3 big league innings with an above-average 25.2% strikeout rate. He’s had some uncharacteristic issues with walks this season, although it’s possible his persistent shoulder woes played some role in that.
The Dodgers have reached the point in the season where every game feels pivotal. After dropping tonight’s contest in St. Louis, they fell two games back of the Giants in the NL West with 22 contests remaining on the schedule. There’s no question the Dodgers will make the playoffs, but they’ll need a strong finish to avoid the Wild Card game. After wrapping up their series with the Cardinals tomorrow, Los Angeles has sets against the Padres (twice), Diamondbacks (twice), Reds, Rockies and Brewers to close out the year.