Dodgers: Potential tandem starter pairs to watch out for this October
As the Dodgers cruise into the playoffs with the divisional title secure, they still are really only three starters deep.
With Clayton Kershaw, Walker Buehler, and Hyun-Jin Ryu (who is still a bit of a maybe) perched atop the rotation, the Dodgers will need innings for Game 4, plus in the event of any one of these three struggling in the postseason.
Again, Ryu is the least secure of these three, and he may benefit from having only four innings, or two times through the order, to get through. For me, Ryu’s soft stuff and accuracy-based approach would be best paired with traditional relievers like Pedro Baez and Joe Kelly, as not many others in the bullpen have the velocity of this duo.
But beyond the big three at the top, Tony Gonsolin, Ross Stripling, and Julio Urias all seem capable of being the bulk men in any tandem starting pairing Dave Roberts could create for the playoffs. Outside of this trio, Kenta Maeda, Dustin May, and Caleb Ferguson could also provide one or two innings as openers or as bridges between bulk guys.
The best part of this Dodgers team, perhaps more than any of the past two seasons, is the all-around depth. Not only is the lineup filled with interchangeable parts that make double switches easier than ever, but also the rotation of possible arms (yeah, it’s not really a starting rotation anymore), really can bridge any series thanks to its depth.
In this article, I’ll break down the possible tandem starting duos that could work best against lefty-heavy lineups and versus righty-heavy lineups using the pitchers currently at Roberts’ disposal (sorry Rich Hill).