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Dodgers notes: Playoff rotation, Zach McKinstry’s debut

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Wild card round opponent will help determine the starting pitchers used

Los Angeles Dodgers v San Diego Padres Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images

As the Dodgers continue their long weekend in Denver, here are a few leftover notes from Thursday that didn’t seem to fit in any particular place.

Manager Dave Roberts said after Thursday night’s game that the Dodgers haven’t yet settled on a starting rotation order for the best-of-3 wild card round. “We’re not close at all,” Roberts said. “I think that’s opponent-dependent.”

If the Dodgers hold on to the No. 1 seed, they would play the No. 8 seed in the opening round at Dodger Stadium. That spot is currently occupied by the Phillies, at 24-25.

Zach McKinstry was called up earlier this season, on August 5, but it was just for one day and he didn’t play. He’s been on the taxi squad for several Dodgers road trips. But he said all that experience of being around the major league team this season didn’t help squash any nervousness he had making his major league debut on Wednesday in San Diego.

“It probably built up those emotions even more,” McKinstry said on a conference call Thursday. “It’s kind of like if you’re at an amusement park and you’re standing in line at the ride you really wanted to ride on, and it kind of shut down on you, and you’re like the third person in line to get on the ride, but you’ve got to wait two or three weeks, or a month to go back on my ride.”

This series in Colorado is only the second for the Dodgers outside of their time zone (with the caveat that, during the summer, Arizona doesn’t participate in daylight savings time so they run on the same clock as California).

“It’s been a crazy year in general, but as far as travel it hasn’t been a grind. We’ve been very fortunate,” Roberts said Thursday. “I think the toughest thing coming to Denver is the 45-minute bus ride from the airport.”

Links

Brusdar Graterol throws the hardest on the Dodgers staff, but it hasn’t yet translated into many strikeouts. Bill Plunkett at the Orange County Register on the abundantly joyful 22-year-old.

Clayton Kershaw’s gain in fastball velocity and Corey Seager’s increased hard-hit rate have both among Andrew Simon’s most improved MLB players in 2020 at MLB.com.

The LA Dodgers Foundation is shifting to a virtual run this year from November 8-15. Signup includes this [looks at bobblehead to make sure] Walker Buehler running bobblehead:

Enjoy this 76-year-old picture of Vin Scully on his high school baseball team: