Dodgers general manager Ned Colletti was on The Peter Tilden Morning Show on KABC Tuesday morning in his weekly appearance, and indicated that Jonthan Broxton has lost his gig as full-time Dodger closer. The audio from the interview isn't yet up, but Ken Gurnick of MLB.com heard the interview and has a quote from Colletti's interview:
"We hope to get [Hong-Chih] Kuo back Friday. [Vicente] Padilla's been back a few days. We hope to give [manager] Donnie [Mattingly] three choices or so at the end of the game and let him make up his mind based on matchups or whatever until Broxton can get his confidence back and get settled."
Broxton got his first blown save of the season last night against the Marlins, and has struggled all season. Broxton has allowed 19 baserunners in 10 1/3 innings, with eight strikeouts. Moving Broxton from the closer role could solve the Dodgers' bullpen woes, but the larger problem is that Broxton simply needs to pitch better. Even if he's not closing, Broxton will likely be used in high leverage situations, whether they are in the sixth, seventh, or eighth innings. A productive Broxton, in whatever role, is still a major key for the Dodgers to have an effective pitching staff.
Kuo, who pitched on back-to-back occasions just four times last season (twice facing one batter in the second outing, and once facing two batters), is scheduled to pitch again tonight for Class A Rancho Cucamonga on a rehab assignment after pitching one inning last night. Kuo is eligible to be activated from the disabled list on Friday.
UPDATE: Per Dylan Hernandez of the LA Times, Broxton was told in a meeting with Mattingly today that Broxton is still the team's closer.
Paul Claimed By
Following the Delwyn Young path (not to mention Andy LaRoche, James McDonald, and Andrew Lambo, who were traded), outfielder Xavier Paul was claimed by the Pittsburgh Pirates today. He was designated for assignment last Monday when the Jerry Sands era began. Paul, who was out of options, made the opening day roster this year and made two starts in left field, but quickly moved to the far end of the bench. He managed three singles in 11 at-bats, but only saw four plate appearances (all strikeouts) over his final 10 days as a Dodger.
Juan Uribe (left thigh) is out of the fourth straight game, and Casey Blake (swollen left elbow) is out for the second straight night.
I was a guest on The Replacement Level Podcast, with Jeff Creps and Chase Garrity. Full episode can be found here.
Game Time: 4:10 p.m.