Graterol has struggled in his three appearances this season, allowing three runs over 1 1/3 innings. He made his last appearance on Monday against the Reds. Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said that Graterol was available to pitch on Wednesday, but the right-hander said he wasn’t feeling like he could throw on Thursday. With a bullpen game on Friday, the Dodgers decided to place him on the IL.
“For us, we want to make sure we take care of the player,” Roberts said. “If he feels he can’t throw, [we] just [want] to be proactive and put him on the IL. I’m going to learn more in a little bit.”
Like any forearm issue, there’s always a high level of initial concern, but the Dodgers don’t quite know the severity. Graterol will likely undergo some tests. What the Dodgers do know, is that losing Graterol, even for 10 days, is another blow to the bullpen. Los Angeles lost Corey Knebel for a couple of months with a lat strain and David Price will be sidelined for weeks with a hamstring strain.
Graterol missed the early portion of the season as he continued his buildup at the alternate training site. He was slightly behind schedule during Spring Training and didn’t make any Cactus League appearances due to undisclosed issues over the offseason.
Raley hit his first big league homer on April 16 against the Padres, but the outfielder struggled to get consistent results. In 14 games, Raley had a .206 batting average and a .631 OPS.
White, on the other hand, was placed on the IL before Tuesday’s game due to side effects from the COVID-19 vaccination. By activating White, the Dodgers have 14 pitchers on the roster, setting them up for a bullpen game on Friday.
Roberts doesn’t yet know who will start Friday’s game, but he did confirm that it’ll be a bullpen game. The team is hoping to give its starters an extra day off as it wraps up a stretch of 14 consecutive games without an off-day.
“There’s a lot of options as far as who’s going to start the game,” Roberts said. “I see a handful of guys pitching tomorrow. I think that for us, we’re just going to kind of see how we come out of today to make that decision.”
White is one of the pitchers that the Dodgers could lean on as a two-inning pitcher. Jimmy Nelson could also provide two innings. Price had been tentatively scheduled to pitch the bulk of the innings on Friday prior to landing on the IL.
Dodgers infielder Gavin Lux, who was born in Kenosha, Wis., and played high school baseball there, will be playing in Milwaukee for the first time in his professional career this weekend. Lux wasn’t in the starting lineup on Thursday, but Roberts said he expects the infielder to play the next three.
Lux said he’ll have about 20 friends and family members attending Thursday’s game.
“I’m definitely pumped up,” Lux said. “A lot of my really good friends will be here and they haven’t seen me play since I’ve gotten called up. So they’re probably more excited than even I am. But obviously my family, it’s always great getting to see them and I know they love seeing me play because they don’t get an opportunity to do that too much anymore.”
With friends and family in attendance, Lux hopes to break out of a recent slump at the plate. After getting off to a hot start in the opening series against the Rockies, Lux has gone 4-for-37 (.108) since. He also had to battle a wrist injury that kept him out 10 days.
“[My] confidence is fine right now. I’m usually a slow starter anyways. I kind of always have been, so it’s kind of the norm for me,” Lux said. “But I’m not worried. … Overall, confidence isn’t wavering at all. Just gotta keep getting at-bats. It’s a long year.”
• Garrett Cleavinger took a 105.7 mph liner off his tricep in the ninth inning of Wednesday’s win against the Reds, but the left-hander is OK, according to Roberts.
“He’s a little sore,” Roberts said. “I think that we came out of it -- we dodged a bullet. He’s going to be active and available tonight, if need be. And so again, he responded really well to treatment.”
• Joe Kelly also threw in a game at the alternate training site on Wednesday. Roberts didn’t hear any reports from the outing, which he takes as good news. Kelly, who has been out of action since the beginning of Spring Training with an undisclosed injury, likely won’t join the team in Milwaukee or Chicago, but there’s a chance that he could be active at some point during next weekend's series against the Angels in Anaheim. The upcoming homestand, which begins May 11, could also be a realistic timeline for Kelly.