"He composed himself well. There were just a couple pitches he left up, really," manager Dave Roberts said before Friday night's series opener vs. the Braves. "I think there was some growth, I do. When you make 80 pitches and you don't execute 10 pitches, you get more exploited here. That's something that he will learn."
Urias threw a total of 81 and 79 pitches, respectively, in his first two starts, roughly in line with his 80 and 90-pitch limits set before the game. In seven starts with Triple-A Oklahoma City this season, Urias' highest pitch count was 82.
While the results in his first two starts don't reflect the pedigree of MLBPipeline.com's No. 2 overall prospect, context remains important. Urias made his debut as a starter and as a teenager, the first Dodger to do so since Fernando Valenzuela, and he pitched against the defending National League champions in the Mets and the team with the best record in baseball in the Cubs, both on the road.
"I don't really know if there's an ideal situation," Roberts said. "When you're talking about Major League hitters and Major League ballparks, there's really no soft landing. You can script it or paint it any way you want, but these are still very good hitters, regardless of what opponent and where you're playing."
Roberts wasn't ready to name a starter for Thursday, when Urias' turn comes up.
"Obviously, I think the No. 1 thing, the 1 and 1a, is winning baseball games and also his future and monitoring his pitch limit," Roberts said. "This is something that's an ongoing discussion. We'll let Julio know as soon as we make a decision."
Jack Baer is a reporter for MLB.com based in Los Angeles.