The Dodgers selected reliever Wander Suero from Triple-A Oklahoma City before Friday night’s game against the Padres in San Diego. Gavin Stone was optioned to Triple-A after his major league debut, with the Dodgers going back to a five-man starting rotation and eight pitchers in the bullpen.
The addition of Suero makes the 40-man roster full once again. The 31-year-old right-hander had a 1.69 ERA in the offense-friendly Pacific Coast League in 10 games with Oklahoma City, with five walks and eight strikeouts in 10⅔ innings.
Suero was a non-roster invitee in spring training, having signed a minor league contract with the Dodgers on January 23. He pitched four seasons in the majors (2018-21) with the Nationals, with a 4.61 ERA and 200 strikeouts in 185⅓ innings.
Suero does have an option year remaining, having used options in 2018 and 2021 with Washington.
The timing of the Dodgers needing another reliever was beneficial for Suero, for one because the team had room on the 40-man roster to add him. But also, the three optioned pitchers currently in the minors are still within their 15-day optional assignment, and can’t be called up unless replacing a player going on the injured list, paternity list (with Caleb Ferguson’s wife expecting soon), or some other-type list.
Justin Bruihl is the most likely of the 40-man pitchers in the minors to be called up under normal circumstances, but he was optioned on April 28. The earliest he can return unless replacing someone in the circumstance above is May 13. Should the Dodgers want to call another pitcher up as a straight move, Andre Jackson can’t return until May 11, and Alex Vesia is a no-go until May 18.
Stone’s first stint in the majors was for one game, allowing five runs (four earned) on eight hits in four innings in his debut on Wednesday, striking out one while walking two.
The Dodgers are now back to a five-man rotation, with every pitcher except for Sunday starter Julio Urías starting on more than four days rest this next time through.