LOS ANGELES -- In wake of the Dodgers' offense roaring to life in recent weeks, their pitching staff is set to earn a potentially significant boost next week.
Left-hander Rich Hill will be activated from the 10-day disabled list and rejoin the club next week at Chicago. Hill, who's been sidelined with a finger blister since May 20, will start against the Cubs on Tuesday.
Hill threw a 75 pitches in the Minor League rehab start Thursday, and he was pleased with the results of the outing.
"It felt great. It felt normal," Hill said. "I would say my curveball was probably the best it's been in three years. My fastball is as good as it was in '16 and last year. We made a few mechanical, small changes that made huge differences with the ball coming out of my hand the way that I want it to."
Roberts noted that the southpaw's blister held up well during the outing, inspiring trust in Hill's return.
"We're pretty confident he can make the start on Tuesday and get through it in good shape," manager Dave Roberts said.
Roberts said Los Angeles' rotation is scheduled as the following: Alex Wood against the Giants on Saturday; Caleb Ferguson against the Giants on Sunday; Kenta Maeda on Monday against the Cubs; Hill against the Cubs on Tuesday.
Injury updates: Kershaw, Buehler, Utley
• Dodgers left-hander Clayton Kershaw threw an extended bullpen Friday. However, it's unclear what the next step in his rehab is. Kershaw has been on the DL since June 1 with lower back discomfort.
Roberts, who noted that Kershaw's pitch execution wasn't up to the southpaw's personal standards, said that the next step in Kershaw's rehab will not be appearing in a Major League game.
"Major League start is not the next step," Roberts said. "Making sure Kershaw is OK with next step being either a sim game or a rehab assignment."
• It's also unclear when rookie right-hander Walker Buehler, who was placed on the 10-day DL with a rib injury on June 9, will return to the rotation.
"Walker is feeling better with time," Roberts said. "He's playing catch. But as far as a timetable, when he'll make a start again for us, I'm not certain."
• Second baseman Chase Utley is expected to rejoin the Dodgers during their road trip next week, Roberts said Friday.
Utley, who's been on Los Angeles' disabled list since May 30 with a sprained left thumb, is most likely to return to the club during its three-game series at Chicago. The 39-year-old played a simulated game Friday, taking several at-bats against Minor League right-hander Elio Serrano.
"Chase looked really good," Roberts said.
Farmer recalled; Baez placed on 10-day DL
The Dodgers recalled catcher James Farmer from Triple-A Oklahoma City on Friday, the club announced. Los Angeles placed right-hander Pedro Baez on the 10-day disabled list with right biceps tendinitis.
Baez is the ninth pitcher the Dodgers currently have placed on the DL, joining Buehler, Kershaw, Hill, Tony Cingrani, Tom Koehler, Hyun-Jin Ryu, Dennis Santana and Julio Urias.
Dodgers ink Draft picks
According to Jim Callis, the Dodgers signed fourth-round Draft pick Braydon Fisher for $497,500 (134th pick valued at $402,300), a Texas HS RHP; fifth-rounder Devin Mann for $272,500 (164th pick valued at $300,600), Louisville 2B; eighth-rounder Luke Heyer for $47,500 (254th pick valued at $155,300), Kentucky OF/3B; Josh McLain, ninth-rounder for $7,500, North Carolina State CF; and 26th-rounder Aaron Ackerman for $125,000, an Illinois-Chicago C.
Dodgers' Father Day fight against prostate cancer
The Dodgers will join league-wide efforts to raise awareness about prostate cancer and raise funds for research to fight the disease during games Sunday on Father's Day.
This effort also includes the annual Prostate Cancer Foundation "Home Run Challenge," which has given fans the chance to make a one-time monetary donation or pledge for every home run hit by their favorite MLB Clubs during the time period of June 1 through Father's Day, all the while tracking where their team stacks up in a "Team vs. Team" competition.
Every dollar donated through the Home Run Challenge goes to PCF to fund critical research to defeat prostate cancer. As of Friday, more than $1.85 million has been pledged via the Home Run Challenge in 2018. Since inception, the Home Run Challenge has raised nearly $50 million for PCF, the world's leading philanthropic organization funding and accelerating prostate cancer research.
During Father's Day games, players and on-field personnel will wear the symbolic blue ribbon on their uniforms along with blue wristbands. Also, for the third consecutive year, players will wear specially-designed caps to raise awareness and funds for the fight against prostate cancer. MLB will again donate all royalty payments from the sales of specialty caps and apparel to the Prostate Cancer Foundation and Stand Up To Cancer.