Predicting the Dodgers’ 2022 postseason roster

Everyone with any association with the Dodgers — players, coaches, executives, ownership, fans — are just waiting for Oct. 11, which is when they’ll host the first game of the 2022 National League Division Series. Their opponent is to be determined, as is the postseason roster.

Dave Roberts remarked on Wednesday about potential said roster.

With that being said, let’s take a look at who the 32 might be and who the 26 might ultimately be.

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Locks

Here are the 100%, no-doubt locks (as long as each guy is healthy).

Position players (8)

Pitchers (10)

Not as many sure-fire locks as you might think. So, we’re at 18 of 26 spots, with plenty of interesting players remaining. Let’s just assume they’re going with a 13/13 split between position players and pitchers. In a shorter series, however, they could be inclined to drop a starter like Heaney in favor of another position player. But Heaney would be an interesting 2020 Urias-esque option out of the ‘pen.

Normally, guys like Cody Bellinger and Chris Taylor would be locks, especially given their past postseason heroics. However, with the emergence of Thompson and both Bellinger and Taylor’s struggles, it’s hard to say they’re 100% going to make it. At the same time, if it comes down to Taylor or, say, Hanser Alberto, Taylor is getting the nod. Bellinger’s defense, speed and power are too intriguing to leave off the roster, despite his struggles. Gavin Lux is a shoo-in if he’s healthy. He has dealt with neck and back issues the last few weeks and those are sometimes unpredictable. But if he’s healthy, he’s getting a spot, too.

That leaves two more spots. The Dodgers don’t have a third catcher on the 40-man roster, so that’s not a concern. Here are the remaining 40-man roster guys not yet named: Jacob Amaya, Joey Gallo, Eddys Leonard, James Outman, Kevin Pillar, Edwin Rios, Miguel Vargas, Jorbit Vivas. We can, immediately, eliminate Amaya, Lenoard, Pillar and Vivas. So, that leaves two spots from the quintet of Alberto, Gallo, Outman, Rios and Vargas. It’s hard to see them leaving Gallo at home because of his power and defense, so he’s in. That’s a disadvantage to Outman and Rios since they’re all left-handed hitters. And while Vargas hasn’t been overly impressive in his short MLB time, I could see Roberts opting for him strictly because he’s right-handed. I mean, he’s on the roster ahead of Outman and Rios right now, which says a little bit. Ultimately, though, I think Roberts goes with Alberto because of Veteran Presents.

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On the pitching side, there is room for three more arms. Caleb Ferguson is the most glaring omission from the locks. He has been really good this season and would give the Dodgers a second (or third) lefty in the postseason bullpen. After him, you’re looking at two more pitchers from this group:

I’m not including the guys who have virtually no chance of making it — Michael Grove, Heath Hembree, Andre Jackson, and Ryan Pepiot. And Walker Buehler, Daniel Hudson, and (effectively) Jimmy Nelson are out for the season, so they’re not included.

Now, if all nine players listed above are healthy, the easy picks would be Almonte, Gonsolin and Graterol, as all have been really good this season. Bickford and Bruihl are healthy, but I think they’re down the pecking order a bit. Duffy is interesting, but he has just 5 2/3 innings in the minors this season and it’d be surprising if he does even to warrant a spot. Gonzalez has experience in October but has just 7 2/3 innings himself. Price has also been good in more than mop-up duty, so if any of Almonte, Gonsolin or Graterol aren’t ready in a month, he could get the nod despite just going on the injured list with wrist inflammation. If Gonsolin is in and it’s down to Almonte or Graterol, I think Roberts goes with the more familiar option in Bruiser. If it comes down to Almonte or Ferguson, I could see Doc going with the higher-upside option in Almonte, but I’m not sure he’ll be healthy enough for him to make that choice.

Final prediction

Position Players (13)

Pitchers (13)

This is subject to change based on the Dodgers’ NLDS opponent, but most of these guys should play in October.

About Dustin Nosler

Dustin Nosler began writing about the Dodgers in July 2009 at his blog, Feelin' Kinda Blue. He co-hosted a weekly podcast with Jared Massey called Dugout Blues. He was a contributor/editor at The Hardball Times and True Blue LA. He graduated from California State University, Sacramento, with his bachelor’s degree in journalism and a minor in digital media. While at CSUS, he worked for the student-run newspaper The State Hornet for three years, culminating with a 1-year term as editor-in-chief. He resides in Stockton, Calif.