Dodgers: Dave Roberts Faces Bullpen Questions Once Again

As the Dodgers ended up on the losing end of a pitcher’s duel in New York on Saturday night, questions once again surfaced about the up and down LA bullpen. After 7 shutout innings from Hyun-Jin Ryu in his first start in 10 days, the bullpen came on in the 8th inning and was wobbly at best.

3 pitchers combined to record 3 outs, but 3 runs were also surrendered on two hit batters, a walk, and a pinch-hit, base clearing double off the bat of Rajai Davis.

After the game, Dave Roberts didn’t mince words when it came to he bullpen’s effort.

We just didn’t pitch well in the 8th.

Adam Kolarek opened the inning and got his lone batter Robinson Cano on a strikeout. Roberts then turned to Joe Kelly — appearing in his 3rd contest in 4 days — who came in to hit a batter and strike out a batter before giving way to Julio Urias. Urias hit a batter, walked a batter to load the bases, and gave up the game-winning pinch-hit double to saddle Kelly with the loss.

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The concern for Dodgers Nation turned to the fact that the arms appearing in the 8th inning are lined up to be the go-to arms for Los Angeles in October, and I shared this thought on Twitter.

Moreover, the LA bullpen earned its 23rd loss of the season and is tied for 2nd worst in IS% — inherited runners scoring percentage — with 39%. While the bullpen has been much better than it was early in the season (2nd best in MLB since June 1 with a 3.50 ERA), it remains the biggest question mark for the World Series contending Dodgers.

12 games remain in the regular season.

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