Dodgers: Dave Roberts Envisions Santana As Starter, Updates On Keibert Ruiz

The Dodgers have plenty of depth on their roster and that was on display Tuesday in Arizona. Dennis Santana came on in the third inning to strike out the side in his second scoreless outing of the spring. Dave Roberts has been impressed with what he has seen from Santana thus far and praised his work in a postgame huddle with the media.

Despite starting the conversation with starter Victor Gonzalez, Roberts immediately turned his attention to Santana in the huddle.

The star of the day on the mound was Santana. Dennis..the strength he has that he’s gained, allowed for his delivery to hold his delivery and the throws are really good and the sink is late…it was really encouraging today.

Roberts was also quick to note that while he did like what he saw from him, the Dodgers ultimately envision him as a starter long-term. And if that’s the case, it seems unlikely that Santana breaks the Opening Day roster, given the number of starters the team already has.

If he continues to throw the baseball like he has been, he’s a guy that gives us versatility as a starter and as a reliever…He’s just got to continue to mature as a player…He’s throwing the ball well first time out…We’re going to keep building him up(as a starter).

Santana tossed a combined 93 innings at Triple-A in 2019 and really struggled. But he has shown promise throughout his professional career and certainly appears to be trending up.

Roberts also gave an update on Dodgers star catching prospect Keibert Ruiz. Ruiz has yet to see any game action despite reportedly being back to 100 percent. Roberts noted that he’s working on some mechanical stuff before he gets into games.

Keibert will be in a game, I’m thinking Thursday or Friday we’ll get him in a game. For him, he’s been working on a little of a swing change. Not necessarily an overhaul at all…Just trying to get his path to the ball a little just not underneath.

Ruiz is the Dodgers’ number three prospects and is likely their catcher of the future. The switch-hitting backstop put up a 316 batting average at Triple-A last year before a broken finger derailed his season.

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