Dodgers Rotation: It’s Time to Acquire Another Pitcher

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It’s time. 

Carlos Frias and Mike Bolsinger have been really great for the Dodgers after “filling in” for the injured Hyun-jin Ryu and Brandon McCarthy this season. The Dodgers have fared very well with the rookie and the former D-back in the starting rotation which has been led by duel aces Clayton Kershaw and Zack Greinke. It helps that Greinke is having a Cy Young worthy season when half of your rotation was decimated early in the year.

10 games above .500 and 4 games ahead of the Giants in the West is a great place to be in. Yet the Dodgers seem to be limping into the All-Star Break with yet another injury to add to the long tally. Right-hander Carlos Frias was placed on the disabled list on Sunday. With the bullpen taking up extra innings when Carlos Frias and Mike Bolsinger make their starts, now more responsibility will be put on the bullpen with Frias hurt unless a spot starter (or newly traded starter!) can go deep into their game(s).

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We knew the time would come when the Dodgers made a move to acquire a new pitcher. The time is now. The Dodgers don’t want to yield any of their four games to the Giants going into the second half. With the additional blow to the rotation coming into focus, the Dodgers need to bring in some help. The Dodgers should look to finish the first half with a strong push in order to go into the second half hot.

With an acquisition of another starting pitcher or two, the Dodgers could contend with the Cardinals, Giants, Nationals and Pirates in hopes of a postseason berth. It would be nice if the Dodgers did somehow trade for a frontline starter like a Cole Hamels (make it happen Philadelphia!) in order to counter the Washington or St. Louis rotations.

"“We’re going to have to bridge the gap a little going into the break.”- Farhan Zaidi to Alanna Rizzo on SportsNet LA before Sunday’s game at Dodger Stadium."

If the Dodgers should look to bridge the gap until the break, they could use a mix of arms ranging from Eric Stults to the newly acquired Trevor Cahill. Although I’d rather not be right this soon on Cahill pitching in Blue before the year is over. I think the Dodgers knew that Frias had been feeling some back issues (he said he first felt it in San Francisco), and the Dodgers picked up Cahill thereafter.

Ian Thomas could be an option for a start or two in a bullpen game, or there is Juan Nicasio who did get a start in a bullpen game not too long ago for the Dodgers. I wonder if they could ever stretch Juan Nicasio out to pitch more than two innings down the road. He’s been very effective for the Dodgers this season, and he has struck out 35 in 33 innings of work. He has yet to allow a homerun this season, and he had once made 31 starts for the Rockies just two seasons ago.

Could the Dodgers somehow acquire Johnny Cueto? Photo: Anthony Gruppuso-USA TODAY Sports

I’ve already clamored for a Zach Lee debut, but he may need some more rehab time before he pitches for the Dodgers. The Dodgers could call up an arm from AA-Tulsa, but that would require a roster move with the exception of Chris Reed who is on the 40-man roster.

The Dodgers will likely make a move to acquire a pitcher before the July 31st trade deadline, but I’m still not sure if they go for the gusto and get a Cueto or a top guy. With Zack Greinke’s contract in the back of their minds, the front office will need to be resourceful in their dealings in order to bolster the rotation for the second half and possibly postseason this year without depleting the farm system for subsequent seasons which may or may not include a Zack Greinke in the equation.

The Brandon McCarthy deal didn’t pan out. The Brett Anderson signing had excellent returns. The Mike Bolsinger addition was smart. Let’s hope whatever the move the front office makes to strengthen this Dodger rotation is not too late and not too little.

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