Buehler's return may lead to 6-man rotation

Dodgers considering temporary move to begin second half

July 11th, 2018

SAN DIEGO -- With coming off the disabled list to start on Friday night, the Dodgers are considering using a six-man starting rotation coming out of the All-Star break, manager Dave Roberts said on Tuesday.

The Dodgers will play 17 consecutive days after the break, including a 10-game trip through Milwaukee, Philadelphia and Atlanta, then a seven-game homestand against Milwaukee and Houston before the next day off on Aug. 6.

"We've talked about it, with 17 games in a row, if it ever made sense that's one of those times," said Roberts. "It's something for us to really consider."

will follow Buehler, who is on the DL because of microfractured ribs, and start on Saturday. Rich Hill, scheduled to start on Tuesday night, would be on regular rest to start on Sunday in the first-half finale, but Roberts wouldn't make that commitment. The Dodgers can reset the order coming out of the break, adding , Alex Wood and .

Stripling could be supplemented to the National League All-Star team as an injury replacement, which could impact the day he starts for the Dodgers. And after the 17-game stretch, barring an injury or a trade, one of the six would move to the bullpen or get a 10-day disabled list vacation.

"At some point, if everyone stays healthy, which is the goal, we're going to have to make a decision, because a six-man rotation isn't ideal for any extended period of time," said Roberts. "Coming out of the break, it's a thought."

Injury update: Baez, Cingrani, Fields, more

• Roberts said (right biceps tendinitis) has moved ahead of Tony Cingrani (left shoulder strain) as the reliever on the DL who is closest to returning to the Dodgers, followed by Josh Fields (right shoulder inflammation). That means that Cingrani, who held the pole position briefly, "isn't feeling as great as he was a week ago," said Roberts, who listed Tom Koehler (right shoulder strain) and (left shoulder surgery) down the list. Koehler was scheduled to face hitters in Arizona on Wednesday, but Roberts said he's not bouncing back from throwing as quickly as desired.

Baez is scheduled to begin a Minor League rehab assignment during the All-Star break.

• Before Tuesday night's game, the Dodgers activated Maeda from the paternity list and optioned left-handed reliever to Triple-A Oklahoma City. Maeda became a father for the second time on Friday, then started against the Angels and allowed one run in 5 2/3 innings of a no-decision. He is scheduled to start on Wednesday against the Padres at Petco Park.