Dodgers Brock Stewart Likely To Start Wednesday

Los Angeles Dodgers Mandatory Credit: Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports
Los Angeles Dodgers Mandatory Credit: Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports /

The Dodgers’ rotation will welcome its most unlikely member so far on Wednesday.

The Dodgers have been on a search for a fifth starter to keep the rotation afloat until pitchers return from injury. Frankie Montas was a likely candidate before reinjuring his rib, Mike Bolsinger and Nick Tepesch both struggled in their starts, Ross Stripling is just getting back in rhythm in the minors and Zach Lee is in the Seattle organization now.

Brock Stewart was about as far off anyone’s radar as possible to start the season. updates their prospects throughout the season, and as of publishing, Stewart was the 26th ranked prospect on the Dodgers. Stewart was the number 61 prospect on Dodgers Digest’s preseason prospect rankings and number 34 on True Blue LA’s preseason list, so this is surprising news to everyone.

Stewart began the year in high-A Rancho Cucamonga, but only stayed there for two great starts before being promoted to AA Tulsa. Stewart made nine starts there and went 3-3 despite a 1.12 ERA in 56.1 innings. His numbers took a minor dip when he was promoted to AAA OKC, but in 18.2 innings he posted a 2.89 ERA and had 27 strikeouts with only two walks.

In his 14 starts through the three minor league systems, Stewart has gone at least five every time out and has only failed to go six twice. He hasn’t cracked 100 pitches yet, but has thrown more than 90 pitches six times and in five of his last six starts. He’s only given up three earned runs in two starts, so Stewart figures to give the Dodgers a decent chance at a quality outing.

This Dodgers Digest piece from about a week ago takes a closer look at Stewart. His stuff looks like it will translate as long as he can keep his nerves in control. His best asset appears to be his control, which is one thing that can easily elude a young pitcher making his first career start.

While him being promoted or when he will start have yet to be made official, the Dodgers need a starter for Wednesday and his tweet definitely makes it seem like the start will be his. He’ll be the ninth pitcher to start a game for the Dodgers. He’ll face the Brewers in Milwaukee less than two weeks after the Dodgers took three of four against the Brewers in LA. He’ll be the fourth Dodger starter to make his debut this season. The first, Kenta Maeda, tossed six innings of shutout ball and hit a homer. Ross Stripling made his debut a few days later and flirted with a no hitter in San Francisco, but Julio Urias struggled in his first handful of starts.

Next: Dodgers Considering Jay Bruce

Stewart isn’t on the 40-man roster, so he’ll have to be added to that. The current 40-man roster only has 39 players, so no one will have to be removed from that for Stewart. Someone will have to be removed from the 25-man, and my guess would be Chris Taylor unless someone hits the DL. Justin Turner did leave today’s game with cramping and Clayton Kershaw reportedly has a sore back, but I wouldn’t bet on them being DL’d.