Dodgers: A pre-trade deadline look at LA’s playoff bullpen
The playoff bullpen locks
Over the past few postseasons under Dave Roberts, the Dodgers have gone with twelve pitchers on the playoff roster and thirteen position players. That will likely be the case in the 2019 playoffs. That leaves eight relievers after the four playoff starters. Here are the locks to make the playoff bullpen ahead of the trade deadline:
Locks: Kenley Jansen, Pedro Baez, Joe Kelly, Julio Urias, Kenta Maeda
Ahead of July 31st, the Dodgers appear to have five locks for their playoff bullpen. Kenley Jansen is the obvious one as the closer of the team. While he is no longer dominant, he has been very good since May 5th, with one hiccup being his blown save last week against the Phillies.
Pedro Baez and Julio Urias have been two of the most reliable relievers on the team. While Urias could still wind up in the playoff rotation, all signs point to him staying in the bullpen for this season. Baez has been one of the top relievers in baseball against left-handed batters.
Kenta Maeda seems to shift to the bullpen every postseason and this year figures to be no different. On Friday, Maeda made quick work of the Marlins striking out two batters in a perfect inning of relief. He should help out again this October.
Joe Kelly is the other lock which has more to do with his contract and last year’s World Series. Last October, Kelly was dominant in five innings of the World Series against the Dodgers. After a rough start, he has pitched much better lately and looks like he could be the guy the Dodgers hoped when they gave him a three-year deal.
Now it’s on to the playoff roster hopefuls.