The Los Angeles Dodgers continue to roll with the punches, but when will it be too much? Might Dustin May's injury finally be the start of a rocky road for the best team in the National League?
LA's rotation was already thin. Noah Syndergaard's rough beginning to the season wasn't what the team intended to pay $13 million for. Tony Gonsolin's only made four starts after missing the first month of the season. Michael Grove, who was expected to eat innings via spot starts, hit the IL almost a month ago and isn't exactly nearing a return.
But the biggest loss to date in that secondary tier of pitchers has been Ryan Pepiot, who's been a forgotten figure since he didn't break camp with the team after suffering an oblique injury. So where has he been? What's going on?
He'd be the perfect option right now to slide in as the No. 4 or 5 starter as the rotation continues to be a revolving door on the back end, but he's been on the 60-day injured list and hasn't yet begun a rehab assignment.
Pepiot was transferred to the 60-day IL back on April 21, something that went a bit under the radar because there was optimism the oblique strain was caught early and the right-hander would be able to resume throwing shortly after.
Dodgers need Ryan Pepiot after Dustin May's forearm injury
And it's gotten worse. According to Bill Plunkett of the Orange County Register, Pepiot has been limited to playing catch after feeling "renewed discomfort in his oblique injury." Manager Dave Roberts said he might not be available until after the All-Star break.
This situation has spiraled and further neutered the Dodgers' depth in the pitching department, which feels like it hasn't been a problem in years. Though LA could call up top prospect Gavin Stone or maybe take the plunge with fellow star youngster Bobby Miller, those two were supposed to be the last line of defense with Pepiot and Grove providing some cushion in the meantime.
Maybe the Dodgers' hand on that front is forced sooner rather than later, because this bullpen isn't exactly equipped to handle seven-plus inning workloads on a consistent basis.