After a long wait, the Los Angeles Dodgers released their NLDS roster ahead of Game 1 against the Arizona Diamondbacks on Saturday night. The extended deliberation apparently resulted in two fairly surprising decisions.
LA left trade deadline acquisitions Amed Rosario and Ryan Yarbrough off the roster and subbed in Kolten Wong and Michael Grove as their replacements, it would seem.
Roasrio came over in a deal with the Guardians and immediately provided a jolt for the Dodgers, who had another incredible month of August thanks to his contributions upon arrival. Rosario would later cool off, but he still hit .306 with a .746 OPS in limited duty across September.
Wong, however, hit .300 with an .853 OPS in 20 games of part-time duty with LA in September. The Dodgers signed him to a minor-league contract in mid-August after the Mariners cut him loose. The M's didn't make the playoffs, and the Dodgers now have one of their former players set to contribute.
Wong was this close to running into his former team, the Milwaukee Brewers, in the division series, but the Diamondbacks swept them out of the playoffs.
Dodgers drop NLDS roster with two notable surprises
As for Yarbrough, the veteran lefty might be the bigger surprise. Many have penciled him in as a valuable piece to piggy back a short start or log multiple innings in relief if the bullpen had been taxed. While he wasn't exactly impressive in his 11 games as a Dodger, it was clear he had value in a specific role.
But Michael Grove would seemingly assume those duties after his impressive run (in a similar role) to close out the regular season. After getting shelled as a starter, manager Dave Roberts moved him to the bullpen and the right-hander logged 6.1 scoreless innings and allowed just two hits and one walk while striking out 10.
Going with the hot hand.
Clayton Kershaw has Game 1. The Dodgers' red-hot offense is slated to battle Merrill Kelly. Rookies Bobby Miller, James Outman, Ryan Pepiot and Emmet Sheehan will join Grove as the other rookies on the roster.
Get ready for some playoff baseball. First pitch is scheduled for 6:20 p.m. PST at Dodger Stadium.