Tony Gonsolin pitched three-plus innings and struck out seven batters in his first minor league rehab start for Triple-A Oklahoma City on Thursday afternoon against the Isotopes, a Rockies affiliate, in Albuquerque.
The Dodgers right-hander finished off six of his seven strikeouts on the splitter. Gonsolin pitched into the fourth, but was pulled after walking the first batter.
Gonsolin threw 57 pitches, and his removal was presumably pitch-count-related because right-hander Justin Hagenman was warming up to come in beginning in the third inning.
In the fifth inning, Gonsolin threw more pitches in the bullpen, per Oklahoma City broadcaster Alex Freedman, a real spring training feel for a pitcher who is still building up his innings before joining the Dodgers.
Gonsolin allowed a two-run home run to Isotopes right fielder Daniel Montano on a fastball in the second inning, coming two batters after issuing the first of two walks on the day. That was the only hit against Gonsolin. Coco Montes, who walked to open the fourth inning against Gonsolin, was stranded.
If you've been missing Tony Gonsolin's signature splitter, well we've got something to share... pic.twitter.com/x2p6THUHtT— Oklahoma City Dodgers (@okc_dodgers) April 20, 2023
Gonsolin maxed out at 93 mph on his fastball on Thursday, right at his 2022 regular-season average in the majors, but averaged 90.7 on the pitch in this game. Thursday was his first competitive game action since March 3, when Gonsolin threw 41 pitches in 2⅔ innings against the Angels in Tempe.
Gonsolin is on the injured list with a left ankle sprain he suffered during a fielding drill during spring training at Camelback Ranch on March 6.
Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said Monday in Los Angeles that the plan was for Gonsolin to pitch four innings in this game, and then five innings in another rehab start either next Tuesday or Wednesday before a possible return to the majors. Oklahoma City next week is back home at Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark, hosting the Sacramento River Cats, a Giants affiliate.