LOS ANGELES (AP) — Julio Urias is scheduled to start for the Los Angeles Dodgers in Game 4 of the NL Championship Series against the Chicago Cubs.
Manager Dave Roberts said Monday the 20-year-old rookie from Mexico will open Wednesday, followed by Kenta Maeda in Game 5 on Thursday “as it stands now.”
Urias pitched two scoreless innings of relief in the Dodgers’ win over Washington in Game 5 of the NL Division Series, raising his total innings since Sept. 1 to 16. He has never thrown more than 100 pitches in the major leagues and the team has been careful to manage his workload this season.
“We expect him to just go out there and compete, use his pitch mix and go after these guys,” Roberts said. “Give us a chance to win a baseball game. It’s what Julio’s done all year long.”
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Urias hasn’t thrown over 78 pitches since Sept. 2, although Roberts isn’t concerned about pitch count.
“A lot of it is the stressful innings too,” he said. “It’s going to be a big game, so if he’s throwing the baseball the way we expect, then I’m not afraid to push him to help us win.”
Since the All-Star break, Urias is 5-0 with a 1.90 ERA.
Maeda has struggled lately, allowing seven runs in seven innings over two playoff appearances. Roberts appeared to leave the door open for Clayton Kershaw to possibly pitch in Game 5.
“As this series moves on, you always have to be open to adjusting,” he said without mentioning Kershaw’s name.