LOS ANGELES — Thursday figures to be an important day for the Dodgers, with Tony Gonsolin making a minor league rehab start for Triple-A Oklahoma City during the day, expected to pitch four innings against Albuquerque as he continues his climb back from a sprained left ankle.
That’s also the first day catcher Will Smith is eligible to be activated from the concussion injured list. Signs were promising Monday with Smith participating in a full workout and also hitting in the cage.
“It’s going to be a progression. We’ll see how I recover after today,” Smith said Monday. “It’s day by day.”
The Dodgers open a four-game series on Thursday at Wrigley Field in Chicago, with rain in the forecast all weekend. But that’s nothing new for a Dodgers-Cubs matchup. In each of the last two seasons, one of their games at Wrigley Field was rained out, necessitating a doubleheader the next day. This year’s series in Chicago is about two weeks earlier than in 2021 and 2022.
Andy Pages is off to a great start in his return trip through Double-A Tulsa, including hitting two home runs on Friday. The Dodgers outfielder was named the minor league hitter of the weekend by John Trupin at Baseball Prospectus: “If his start to 2023 is any indication, he’s ready to dominate this level now, elevating the ball consistently with power, yanking moonshots and line drives, and using his quality speed to stretch singles into doubles.”
Pages was also one of a trio of Dodgers to win minor league player of the week honors on Monday, garnering Texas League honors. Pitcher Ben Casparius captured Midwest League honors, along with third baseman Kyle Nevin in the California League.
Marc Normandin over the weekend wrote about opt-out clauses in MLB contracts at his newsletter:
Complaining about players having opt outs or signing deals that pay them for more years but at lower dollars per year looks pretty goofy and one-sided if you aren’t also going to complain about how, say, a player who doesn’t negotiate a no-trade clause can end up traded at any time, for any reason, regardless of their production or how nice the home they bought in the city they had committed to for seven, eight, 10, 12 years, whatever is.