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Dodgers face old friend Scott Kazmir, 5 seasons after his last major league game

Kazmir’s back in the majors for the first time since 2016

Toronto Blue Jays v Atlanta Braves Photo by B51/Mark Brown/Getty Images

The Giants called up old friend Scott Kazmir to start on Saturday, the first time the now 37-year-old will have pitched in a major league game since September 23, 2016, with the Dodgers.

Various injuries kept Kazmir off the mound since then, but he already made one major career comeback, eight years ago with Cleveland, so who’s stopping him in attempting another try?

Dodgers-Giants lineups

Pos Dodgers Pos Giants
Pos Dodgers Pos Giants
CF Taylor RF Yastrzemski (L)
3B Turner C Posey
2B Muncy (L) SS Crawford (L)
1B Pujols 1B Belt (L)
SS Lux (L) 3B Longoria
C Barnes LF Dickerson (L)
LF Beaty (L) 2B Dubón
RF Peters CF Tauchman (L)
P Buehler P Kazmir (L)

“I definitely didn’t expect him to make a start against us this year, but credit to his perseverance,” said manager Dave Roberts, who managed Kazmir in his last major league game.

Kazmir signed a minor league contract with the Giants in February, and pitched twice for Triple-A Sacramento, including 3⅓ innings last Saturday in Oklahoma City against the Dodgers, his last outing.

With the Dodgers facing a left-handed pitcher on Saturday, that means Albert Pujols batting cleanup and playing first base, and DJ Peters getting a second straight start, trying to gain some traction. Peters starts in right field on Saturday, with Mookie Betts getting what Roberts called “a spa day” after starting the Dodgers’ last 18 games, including the last eight days in a row.

Roberts similarly held Max Muncy out of Friday’s starting lineup in the midst of a 10-day stretch of games that ends Sunday, though Muncy did play the final inning on defense at first base.


  • Rehab continues in Triple-A, where Cody Bellinger isn’t playing on Saturday in Albuquerque, a planned off day. Zach McKinstry isn’t starting either for Oklahoma City, but will be inserted later in the game.
  • Tony Gonsolin will pitch two innings for Oklahoma City on Sunday, the first of his expected two or three rehab games in Triple-A, getting stretched out before returning to the Dodgers’ rotation. The earliest Gonsolin can be activated from the 60-day injured list is May 31.
  • Brusdar Graterol threw a 30-pitch bullpen session on Friday in San Francisco, and will throw another one on Tuesday in Houston. After that, it’s possible he could begin a minor league rehab assignment. Graterol is on the injured list with right forearm tightness, and last pitched in a game on April 26.
  • The Giants optioned pitcher Sam Selman to Triple-A Sacramento to make room on the active roster for Kazmir, and designated outfielder Braden Bishop for assignment to make room on the 40-man.