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Dustin May will start NLDS Game 3 for Dodgers

The rookie will take the mound in the potential series-clinching game

Division Series - San Diego Padres v Los Angeles Dodgers - Game One Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images

We thought this would be a decision that likely wouldn’t be announced until Dave Roberts’ press conference later this afternoon, but we have our answer. It’s sort of like getting an early Christmas present, isn’t it?

The Dodgers announced that Dustin May will be getting the start in Game 3 of the NLDS on Thursday evening. This will be the first career postseason start for May, who has come out of the bullpen three times during his young postseason career.

His most recent outing came in Game 1 of this series, where he pitched the fifth and sixth innings. In his two innings of work, May struck out three and didn’t allow a hit, throwing 27 pitches.

“It’s certainly tantalizing,” Roberts said earlier in the week when asked about May’s role with the club for the series. “You see he can do both and what he can do against a part of a lineup in a short burst in leverage. Obviously, he has a whole lot of value. The versatility of Dustin adds to just his value.”

When Roberts turned to May in Game 1, he knew there was a solid chance that the Dodgers could be starting him just two days later. “I think the idea was for Dustin to take on a run tonight, to have him available for three [innings],” he said. “We’ll figure out what capacity if it’s a start of or he comes out of the pen, that was the idea behind it.”

With May officially named the starter, that leaves the two other bulk guys available to come out of the bullpen, with Tony Gonsolin and Julio Urías. Gonsolin hasn’t pitched yet this postseason, and Urias last pitched in Game 1 of the Wild Card Series, where he went three innings in relief.

Depending on how May’s start goes, who knows if any of these guys will be needed tonight. With a potential Game 4 tomorrow, it would make sense that either one of Urías or Gonsolin would be saved and will get a bulk of the innings tomorrow.

Prior to the series starting, Roberts said that he plans on pitching May, Urías and Gonsolin in games 3-5, should the series extend that long. He said that they’ll all be available and that all three of them are built up.