Dodgers manager Don Mattingly said on Wednesday that Dan Haren would start the first game of Thursday's doubleheader against the Twins, and that the club would take advantage of the 26th-man rule to call someone up to start the nightcap. It appears that pitcher will be a bit of a surprise.
Mattingly won't say who starts second game. Red Patterson is a likely callup as 26th man.— Ken Gurnick (@kengurnick) April 30, 2014
Patterson isn't on the 40-man roster, unlike Matt Magill and Stephen Fife. The Dodgers would have to make a corresponding roster move to add Patterson to the 40-man.
Both the Dodgers and Twins are allowed to use a 26th player on their active roster for Thursday's doubleheader.
Patterson is 1-1 with a 4.15 ERA in four starts with Triple-A Albuquerque, with 14 strikeouts and five walks in 21⅔ innings. He last started last Thursday, and was scratched from his Tuesday start for undisclosed reasons.
Red Patterson might not be Minneapolis-bound after all, folks. Turns out the #Topes RHP has the flu. That's why he was scratched yesterday.— Chris Jackson (@TopesWriter) May 1, 2014
Mattingly: Red Patterson will "probably" pitch the second game tomorrow.— Los Angeles Dodgers (@Dodgers) May 1, 2014
If it is Patterson, it appears control won the day. Magill has 12 walks in 23⅔ innings to go with his 4.94 ERA, and Fife, who battled shoulder problems during spring, has nine walks in 19⅓ innings and a 7.45 ERA. Both Fife and Magill pitched on Saturday, so would also be in line for a Thursday start on regular rest.
Zach Lee, 22, has been very good for the Isotopes, with a 3.42 ERA, 17 strikeouts and seven walks in 26⅓ inning, but it's hard to imagine the club would call on Lee for what amounts to a spot start.
Patterson, 27, was invited to his first big league camp this season, and pitched in an exhibition game against Team Australia in Sydney. He was happy for the experience to learn in big league camp.
"There are guys in here with decades of experience. It's the best place to learn, at the highest level," Patterson said during spring training. "Just watch and pick up some things, see how to really handle yourself. It's a whole new ballgame over here."