Dodgers’ Tony Gonsolin update proves they’re not out of woods yet

Adam Weinrib
LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA - AUGUST 23: Tony Gonselin #26 of the Los Angeles Dodgers pitches against the Milwaukee Brewers during the first inning at Dodger Stadium on August 23, 2022 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA - AUGUST 23: Tony Gonselin #26 of the Los Angeles Dodgers pitches against the Milwaukee Brewers during the first inning at Dodger Stadium on August 23, 2022 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images) /
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Will the Dodgers be getting Cy Young candidate Tony Gonsolin back seamlessly when his IL stint is up on Sept. 10? It sure doesn’t seem that way, despite the bill of goods they were selling when Gonsolin’s forearm strain was first detected.

Back then, Gonsolin’s backdated stint (set to Aug. 26) was supposedly a best-case scenario in which the Dodgers “caught it early,” allowing them to slot their star righty back into the rotation as soon as he was eligible.

Phew. Good. Because that could’ve gotten really bad, especially in the wake of Walker Buehler’s Tommy John surgery.

Well … not so much. Gonsolin played some catch on Tuesday, holding himself back from going full-throttle. In the aftermath of the session, Dave Roberts expressed optimism that the Cat Man could build back up quickly enough to be a full-strength factor in the playoffs, but didn’t have any evidence to present that his dream could become a reality.

In actuality, Gonsolin’s forearm strain isn’t progressing as quickly as the team would’ve hoped. A forearm strain, of course, is occasionally nothing. It’s also occasionally a euphemism for “Tommy John surgery,” in the same way a dress can be both “hideous” and “perfect for you.”

Gonsolin may land somewhere between the two extremes, but the Dodgers haven’t given fans any evidence yet that the road to recovery will be a “Point A to Point B” sprint.

Dodgers give bummer Tony Gonsolin update after throwing session

Prior to going down for the count, Gonsolin had compiled a remarkable 16-1 record by limiting base runners spectacularly, whiffing just 116 in 128.1 innings pitched, but allowing just 76 hits with an 0.865 WHIP.

You guessed it, though: those 128.1 innings mark a significant MLB career-high for Gonsolin, who’s never climbed beyond 55.2 innings in a big-league season before (2021, a season where he added just 12.2 minor-league innings).

Such has been the common refrain for pitchers who debuted in 2019, unable to build up whatsoever for their sophomore seasons due to the COVID shutdown and burdened with catching up ever since.

In other words, the more shocking outcome by far would’ve been Gonsolin shaking off the strain immediately to continue climbing the innings count mountain, eventually tripling up his big-league career high en route to a World Series.

Instead, we wait, continuing to pretend that a potentially serious injury is just a nagging, soon-to-disappear bout of soreness. That dress looks great on you.

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