4:30pm: Manager Dave Roberts tells reporters that Heaney has a strain in his shoulder as well (Twitter link via Jack Harris of the L.A. Times). The team is still hopeful that Heaney will only need to miss a couple of starts, but he’ll be shut down entirely for the next few days to give his shoulder some rest.
3:38pm: Dodgers lefty Andrew Heaney is headed back to the 15-day injured list due to inflammation in his left shoulder, the team announced Friday. Right-hander Reyes Moronta is up from Triple-A Oklahoma City in his place.
It’s the second IL stint of the season for Heaney, who inked a one-year, $8.5MM deal as a free agent early in the offseason. Thus far, he’s only been able to make three starts for the Dodgers, though each of that trio has been excellent. Heaney allowed his first earned run of the season in his lone start between IL stints and is now sitting on a 0.59 ERA and a 23-to-4 K/BB ratio through 15 1/3 frames. Armed with a new slider, Heaney has punched out 36.5% of his opponents this year while inducing chases off the plate at a strong 35.7% clip and recording a terrific 18.5% swinging-strike rate.
The Dodgers didn’t provide a timetable for Heaney’s potential return, though it’s obviously of some concern that this is his second IL stint owing to shoulder troubles. The 31-year-old southpaw originally landed on the injured list back on April 20 and missed nearly two months while that injury mended.
With Heaney going back on the shelf and Walker Buehler out for an extended absence, the Dodgers will lean on Clayton Kershaw, Julio Urias, Tyler Anderson and Tony Gonsolin in the rotation. Twenty-seven-year-old righty Mitch White has made four starts so far this season and could be an option to step back into a starting role, and the Dodgers have also given prospects Ryan Pepiot and Michael Grove their big league debuts this season.
The hope is that righty Dustin May will eventually be able to make a return from Tommy John surgery this summer, but he’s still a ways off from being a realistic option. Manager Dave Roberts told reporters last weekend that May has been throwing bullpens and will next throw around four sessions of live batting practice before progressing to the next step (Twitter link via Juan Toribio of MLB.com). May would presumably need several minor league rehab starts before being cleared to join the big league roster, all of which suggests that an August return is possible.