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Buehler optioned to Triple-A; Rosscup called up

Rookie sent down to limit workload around All-Star break
MLB.com @kengurnick

LOS ANGELES -- Walker Buehler and his golf clubs rolled out of the Dodgers' dressing room before Saturday's game, the latest literal move in a nomadic rookie season.

Officially, Buehler -- who allowed two runs in five innings in a no-decision against the Angels Friday night -- was optioned to Triple-A Oklahoma City to make room on the roster for the addition of left-handed reliever Zac Rosscup.

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LOS ANGELES -- Walker Buehler and his golf clubs rolled out of the Dodgers' dressing room before Saturday's game, the latest literal move in a nomadic rookie season.

Officially, Buehler -- who allowed two runs in five innings in a no-decision against the Angels Friday night -- was optioned to Triple-A Oklahoma City to make room on the roster for the addition of left-handed reliever Zac Rosscup.

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In fact, Buehler went home to Kentucky. Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said Buehler would likely throw a simulated game after he reports to Oklahoma City next week, but was otherwise fuzzy on details about the Dodgers' starting rotation coming out of the break and Buehler's role in it.

The Dodgers play 17 consecutive games beginning on Friday, and Roberts said there's still a chance for a six-man rotation to get through it. Buehler could be recalled as early as a week from Tuesday for the fifth game out of the break. Or, not at all.

"We haven't worked it out yet," Roberts said. "This is a workload and roster management move."

Ah, yes, workload. Buehler -- limited to only five innings in 2016 after Tommy John surgery -- pitched 98 innings total in 2017. He's pitched 73 1/3 innings this year. The club hasn't divulged a target for this year, but it's believed to be around 130-150 innings.

A six-man rotation would allow the club to moderate his usage while still having him available. But it would also mean careful handling of the egos and arms of the other five starters, because one or more could be needed to pick up relief innings with a smaller bullpen staff.

"When you have six guys throwing the baseball well, and how you can maximize that and take advantage of that is kind of what we're dealing with," Roberts said.

Buehler, who turns 24 on July 28, has been optioned to Oklahoma City twice this year, to Rancho Cucamonga twice, been sent to Rancho Cucamonga for a rehab assignment and been on the disabled list for a microfractured rib.

Roberts said Rosscup, claimed from Colorado, will fill the situational lefty role created by the injury to Tony Cingrani. Roberts said Pedro Baez is the reliever on the disabled list expected back first after the break, followed by Cingrani and Josh Fields. Roberts said Julio Urias is "really progressing" after throwing two simulated games and is being built as a starter, although he could be pivoted to relief "depending what our needs are here," Roberts said.

Turner day to day
• Roberts said Justin Turner is day to day with a strained right adductor. Turner was available to pinch-hit, but Roberts said he would try to stay away from using him Saturday and Sunday. Roberts said, with the All-Star break, he did not believe Turner would need to go on the disabled list.

Ken Gurnick has covered the Dodgers for MLB.com since 2001.

Los Angeles Dodgers, Walker Buehler, Zac Rosscup