Offseason champion Dodgers' 3 biggest concerns heading into the 2024 season

Division Series - Arizona Diamondbacks v Los Angeles Dodgers - Game Two
Division Series - Arizona Diamondbacks v Los Angeles Dodgers - Game Two / Harry How/GettyImages
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Rotation Health

The other issue with starting pitching is injuries. Buehler is coming back after missing a full season due to Tommy John surgery. We’ve seen just how good a healthy Buehler can be, and pitchers have come back from Tommy John’s before, but again, it’s not an easy thing to do. When will Buehler return? That remains to be seen; it doesn't seem likely to be around Opening Day.

As for Glasnow, the Dodgers received some criticism after giving him a contract extension. It had nothing to do with him as a player; it was simply his ability to stay healthy. He’s only pitched over 90 innings twice in his career, in 2018 (111.2 IP) and last year (120 IP). There is no question that if Glasnow can stay healthy, he will be a major contributor, but the concern still lingers.

Finally, the most recent signing, James Paxton, is another player with a complicated injury history. In a shortened 2020 season, Paxton pitched five games and 20.1 innings; in 2021, he only pitched 1.1 innings before missing all of 2022. This was all due to a herniated disc and removing a cyst from his back, as well as Tommy John surgery. Like Glasnow, Paxton did have a relatively healthy year in 2023, where he pitched 96 innings. 

It’s also worth mentioning that current free agent and Dodger legend Clayton Kershaw is not guaranteed to return to the team in 2024. And, even if he did, he would be missing half the season.