GLENDALE — This afternoon, right-handed pitcher Walker Buehler threw two innings of live batting practice. This is not an unusual sight in the beginning of spring training but it was notable with Opening Day two weeks from tomorrow.
Earlier today, manager Dave Roberts talked a little about Buehler.
Walker Buehler will throw a live BP session shortly. Dave Roberts said if all goes well, he could pitch in a game next. That, or a bullpen then a game. Roberts said Buehler could begin the season on the roster even if he’s built up to just four or so innings.— Jorge Castillo (@jorgecastillo) March 13, 2019
When asked what had happened with their prized pitcher, Roberts said something was amiss with Buehler.
Dave Roberts said club took a step back with Buehler earlier this spring because he “wasn’t really feeling right,” but he’s healthy now.— Ken Gurnick (@kengurnick) March 13, 2019
The live batting practice consisted of Bueher throwing 33 pitches to Corey Seager, Ezequiel Carrera and Paolo Orlando. Seager, who also had an update on his status today, hit a line drive to the outfield but there were no other squared up balls against the young right-hander.
Buehler addressed the media after his outing and talked about his status.
“Just trying to get through healthy, get back on track and that’s what we done” Buehler said when asked how he felt today’s activity went.
Buehler spoke about why he and the Dodgers had taken it slow so far, “just kind of hangover stuff from last year,” Buehler said, “you really don’t want to ramp things until you are feeling right, just kind of normal stuff, nothing super-specific.”
Buehler said this started at the beginning of his throwing program, he wasn’t feeling a 100 percent with his whole body. “Just my arm didn’t feel like it was moving the way that I want to,” Buehler said, “not a pain thing really, more of something doesn’t move perfectly and the way that I kind of work, I need everything to work correctly.”
Buehler said they didn’t do any additional medical exams, just took some time off and restarted his build up.
Buehler said that his careful start of the season could be a combination of the amount of innings he worked last year and how he was feeling when camp began a few weeks ago.
When asked what is next, Buehler said he thinks pitching in a Cactus League game could happen. “I don’t know the exact timetable,” Buehler said, “if we are going to go on a full five-day or kind of one-day short like we did this week, but we’ll be in there.”
Buehler said he doesn’t know why he could not pitch during the first week of the season. “The timing is a little difficult, but I fully plan to be able to pitch,” Buehler said, “and be a normal starting pitcher opening week, and that’s our goal and that’s my goal.”
“If it is four innings, that’s fine, if it’s five, if it is six, I think it is all a matter of how we respond, and that will be it.”
Seager to play in the field tomorrow in minor league
Roberts also said today that Corey Seager will play three innings on the field in a minor league spring training game on the back fields at Camelback Ranch.
Seager, noted above, took live batting practice today against Buehler, appears to be getting ready to get into a Cactus League soon.
Dodgers have a major league lineup tonight against the White Sox
Dodgers will have eight position players in the lineup who will be on the Opening Day roster: David Freese, Kiké Hernández, Chris Taylor and Max Muncy will be around the infield, Joc Pederson, A.J. Pollock and Cody Bellinger will be manning the outfield. The battery will be Russell Martin behind the plate and right-hander Ross Stripling on the mound.