GLENDALE, Ariz. -- The Dodgers made seven more roster moves on Monday, most notably optioning top pitching prospect Walker Buehler to the Minor Leagues.They also optioned Edward Paredes and Rob Segedin and reassigned infielder Player Page for Max Muncy, catcher Will Smith and pitcher Manny Banuelos to Minor League camp
GLENDALE, Ariz. -- The Dodgers made seven more roster moves on Monday, most notably optioning top pitching prospect Walker Buehler to the Minor Leagues.
They also optioned Edward Paredes and Rob Segedin and reassigned infielder Player Page for Max Muncy, catcher Will Smith and pitcher Manny Banuelos to Minor League camp and released reliever Mark Lowe.
Buehler, the Dodgers' No. 12 overall prospect according to MLB Pipeline, struck out five in two innings on Saturday, his first Cactus League game after a slow start because he reported with a back injury sustained in the offseason.
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"With Walker, we want to continue building him up," manager Dave Roberts said. "He's shown well. Got a late start physically, but we'll try to get him back here to make a start later this week. He understands where he's at."
Although Buehler worked as a reliever during his September callup last year, he is viewed as a front-line starting pitcher with a high-90s fastball, a sharp curve and a low-90s changeup. Nonetheless, Roberts said Buehler's one dazzling outing hasn't tempted the Dodgers to accelerate his arrival.
"I think it's more validating what we already know about Walker," Roberts said. "What he went through in September was a learning experience. He's a piece that we're looking forward to and counting on. It's not being tempted. We have a plan in place and feel good about it and just knowing he's going to be a part of it."
Muncy is healing from a strained oblique muscle.
Opening Day starter Clayton Kershaw was happier with his slider in Monday's start during the Dodgers' 7-6 loss to Milwaukee.
Kershaw struck out seven with one walk in a scoreless 3 2/3-innings outing that ended when he reached a pitch limit, although he threw another inning in the bullpen afterward to simulate an extra up-and-down.
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"A little better," said Kershaw, who said his slider needed work after his previous start five days earlier against the Angels. "The last couple innings got a little better rhythm, slider better and that's important for me. Encouraging, another step forward."
Kershaw was removed shortly after a line-drive double by Jesus Aguilar turned around left fielder Matt Kemp.
"The last time I pushed [Kershaw] a little in Tempe, so on regular rest I felt 65 pitches made sense," Roberts said. "I think this is as good as he's thrown the baseball [this spring]. Fastball had carry and slider by far the best he's thrown it. The feel was very good. Today was a good day for him."
Kemp, starting in left field, went 0-for-3 with a run scored and a strikeout; Joc Pederson, starting in center field, went 0-for-2 with a walk and run scored; Alvin Toles, starting in right field, went 1-for-4 with a strikeout; Trayce Thompson was 1-for-2 off the bench; and Alex Verdugo was 1-for-2 off the bench.
Second baseman John Forsythe hasn't played in the field since Friday after experiencing mild soreness in his throwing arm. But he was the designated hitter in Monday's "B" game and expects to return to the lineup later this week.
After a day off on Tuesday, the Dodgers resume play on Wednesday night when Thomas Stripling starts against Jon Gray and the Rockies in a 7:05 p.m. PT game at Camelback Ranch. The game will be broadcast live on MLB.TV. Alex Wood is slated to pitch in a Minor League game.