Dodgers pitcher Tony Gonsolin has been sidelined for a week and a half since suffering a sprained left ankle. Though he’s making progress toward a return, Gonsolin won’t be ready once the season starts and will open the season on the injured list, manager Dave Roberts told reporters at Camelback Ranch on Friday, which was expected.
For first time #Dodgers Dave Roberts acknowledged that Tony Gonsolin being in the rotation to start the season is “not going to happen”— Bill Plunkett (@billplunkettocr) March 17, 2023
Gonsolin suffered the ankle injury during morning workouts at Camelback Ranch on March 6, and was scratched from his scheduled start two days later. On the SportsNet LA broadcast during Thursday’s game, broadcaster Tim Neverett mentioned that Gonsolin’s been throwing from 120 feet this week. But with the time already missed, Gonsolin is essentially back at square one in terms of building up for the season. He made one Cactus League start this spring, throwing 41 pitches in 2⅓ innings against the Angels on March 3.
During that March 3 game, after he was done pitching, Gonsolin told Kirsten Watson on the SportsNet LA broadcast, “I just want to stay healthy the whole season, honestly. Results will take care of themselves.”
Gonsolin had two 60-day injured list stints in 2021 with right shoulder inflammation. He followed that up with a career year in 2022, making the All-Star team and posting a 2.14 ERA in 24 starts. But that was cut short with a right forearm strain that cost him six weeks at the end of the season, missing all of September.
With Gonsolin out, Friday starter Ryan Pepiot and Saturday starter Michael Grove are in the mix for a rotation spot to start the season. Both are on the 40-man, as is Andre Jackson, who has also pitched well this spring, and pitched four innings in a backfield game on Thursday.
Ryan Pepiot and Michael Grove are the expected candidates to compete for the fifth spot in the rotation, though Dave Roberts made sure to mention Andre Jackson as well. https://t.co/nHcJ1D0q8E— Fabian Ardaya (@FabianArdaya) March 17, 2023
All three of Pepiot, Grove, and Jackson are stretched out enough to likely be ready by the first week of the season.
It’s shaping up to be a crowded injured list to open the season for the Dodgers, who already placed Walker Buehler, Blake Treinen, and J.P. Feyereisen on the 60-day IL in February. In addition to Gonsolin, Gavin Lux is out for the year with a torn ACL. Newly-signed pitcher Alex Reyes is still rehabbing from last year’s shoulder surgery and hasn’t yet pitched this spring. Reliever Daniel Hudson also hasn’t pitched in a game yet this spring though he has faced hitters, recovering from ankle tendinitis will likely keep him out for the start of the season. as well, in addition to Gonsolin.