Saturday’s rainout threw a wrench in Dave Roberts’ plans for the remaining NLDS match-ups. According to the Los Angeles Times’ Bill Shaikin, pushing left-hander Rich Hill to Sunday’s start means that the Dodgers won’t have him available for a potential Game 5 scenario on Thursday. Pitching Hill on short rest, especially with the possibility of re-aggravating his blister, just isn’t an option for Roberts.
Prior to Game 2 of the NLDS, which has been rescheduled for 1 PM EDT tomorrow, Roberts name-dropped Clayton Kershaw as a potential starter for Game 4. With the postponement, the Dodgers will likely turn to 20-year-old Julio Urias instead. This way, Kershaw will remain available for Game 5 on regular rest, and Hill will be spared a start on short rest as well.
Urias comes with his own limitations, however, most notably an innings limit that will prevent the starter from pitching deep into the game. It’s not an ideal scenario, especially if the Dodgers find themselves down 2-1 by Thursday, but it’s the one that currently makes the most sense for the rest of the rotation.
An alternate solution? Clinching the NLDS in three.
Ken Rosenthal and Josh Tolentino of The Athletic report that Rays starter Blake Snell has switched agencies, going from Apex Baseball to Boras Corporation. Snell is currently signed to a five-year, $50 million contract and will be under contract through 2023.
Snell found himself in hot water two weeks ago when he said on his Twitch stream that he wouldn’t risk his life to play baseball during a pandemic while receiving significantly reduced pay. Some described Snell as tone deaf for saying, “I gotta get my money. I’m not playing unless I get mine, okay?”
Boras represents many of baseball’s highest-paid players, including Gerrit Cole and Bryce Harper. Snell is not likely to win over any of the people he recently irritated by appearing to go after more money by hiring the highest-profile agent. What often goes unsaid is that players have a very limited window in which to use their elite athletic skills to make money.
Snell won the 2018 AL Cy Young Award, going 21-5 with a 1.89 ERA and a 221/64 K/BB ratio over 180 2/3 innings. He did not have nearly the same success last year, going 6-8 with a 4.29 ERA and a 147/40 K/BB ratio in 107 innings.