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Dodgers notes: Will Smith, Tony Gonsolin, Miguel Rojas

Los Angeles Dodgers v Atlanta Braves Photo by Todd Kirkland/Getty Images

The Dodgers have played 19 different opponents this season, with 10 more to go as this year is the first of MLB’s new scheduling format that has every team play one another. The Royals this weekend will be opponent No. 20 for the Dodgers.

While you try to think of the other teams the Dodgers haven’t yet played in 2023, here are some Tuesday morning stories about the team you might have missed.

Will Smith is having his best season, and David Adler at wrote about the Dodgers catcher’s uncommon consistency.

Amid Tony Gonsolin’s struggles recently — 4.25 xERA on the season, 5.82 ERA in four June starts — and with Julio Urías not yet back just yet, the Dodgers starting rotation remains in flux. Helene Elliott at the Los Angeles Times described the rotation bluntly: “Throw somebody — anybody and sometimes any bodies — out there four times, and on the fifth day wait for Clayton Kershaw to rescue the Dodgers.”

It’s been a tough go at the plate this season for Miguel Rojas, despite being fully recovered from offseason wrist surgery. He’s hitting just .228/.274/.272 with a 52 wRC+.

“I haven’t been able to find my swing on the inner part of the plate, where I’ve been pretty good throughout my career,” Rojas told Mike DiGiovanna at the Los Angeles Times. “I’m a pull hitter, but right now, I’m not able to get the barrel of the bat to the inside pitch, and I’m hitting a lot of popups to right field and hard ground balls to second base.”

Patrick Dubuque at Baseball Prospectus wrote about how bad bullpens are one of baseball’s last areas that can’t always be solved by the never-ending quest for efficiency. “One of the striking things about Mookie Betts playing shortstop this year is that it’s the sort of thing that never happens to LA; they never have to get that desperate,” Dubuque wrote. “They’re the team that practices the fire evacuation plan as a family one Friday night each year. But there’s only so much you can plan with bullpens, only so much organizational advantage to leverage.”