Brewers @ Dodgers June 17, 2016: Will Venable, Starting Right Fielder

Brewers
Dodgers
7:10 p.m. PT
Los Angeles
SS
Villar
2B Utley
3B
Hill
 SS Seager
LF
Braun
3B
Turner
C
Lucory
1B
Gonzalez
1B
Carter
LF
Thompson
RF
Perez
CF
Pederson
2B
Gennett C Grandal
CF
Broxton
RF
Venable
P
Davies (R)
P
Urias (L)

I feel like I missed something. When it was announced that Will Venable was signing with the Dodgers, I was away from my computer and didn’t find out until he pinch hit in Arizona. The Dodgers weren’t using Austin Barnes and having a left-handed bench bat made sense, especially after watching Brad Ziegler and his low arm slot tear through the Dodgers’ all right-handed bench the night before. However, that’s not how Venable has been used. He started yesterday against Junior Guerra, and he’s starting again tonight against Zach Davies.

This is not worth overreacting too much, because Yasiel Puig could return as early as next week, but putting Venable ahead of Scott Van Slyke on the depth chart is strange. Venable has a career 101 wRC+ and hasn’t been close to that since 2013. An important role like this one doesn’t seem like a great fit. There are situations in which he can be useful, like against Ziegler, but platoon starter doesn’t seem like the best of those situations. It’s confusing.

Today is Julio Urias‘ fifth major league start, and potentially his second-to-last this season. This outing will be an important once since it’s following up Scott Kazmir‘s four inning clunker yesterday and precedes a Mike Bolsinger start tomorrow. Somehow, the Dodgers’ eight-man bullpen still feels short. Thanks to Chris Hatcher going two innings yesterday they’re not quite as burned out as they could be, but Joe Blanton was not available yesterday and in an alternate universe Kenley Jansen wouldn’t have been available tonight. This all feels pretty unsustainable, which may be one reason why they’re pulling the plug on Urias’ starts relatively early.

In injury rehab news, Hyun-jin Ryu will be pushed to four innings tonight for Rancho Cucamonga. Brandon McCarthy pitched yesterday and is still on track, but he will be given an extra day off before his next outing.

LA Times beat writer (and more importantly, potential future Dugout Blues guest) Andy McCullough wrote a nice profile on Clayton Kershaw and how his fatherhood has changed him. It also revealed that Kershaw has another child on the way, due in the offseason. The profile is absolutely worth your time, and the news is happy.

ThrowsRelieverSat 10/15Sun 10/16Mon 10/17Tue 10/18Wed 10/19Thur 10/20Fri 10/21
LAvilan--OFF-2421OFF
RBaez34-OFF-2727OFF
RBlanton28-OFF13-19OFF
LDayton3-OFF16-12OFF
RFields--OFF-910OFF
RJansen-18OFF21--OFF
RStripling10-OFF-2018OFF
LWood--OFF-32-OFF

About Daniel Brim

Daniel Brim
Daniel Brim grew up in the Los Angeles area but doesn't live there anymore. He still watches the Dodgers and writes about them sometimes.