The Phillies won’t like the news that Dodgers RHP Tony Gonsolin is IL-bound.
The start of the 2022 Major League Baseball postseason is just six weeks away, and the Philadelphia Phillies will likely be fighting every night until then for one of the three National League Wild Card spots.
Their chances to snap the league’s second-longest postseason drought were negatively affected Monday afternoon — ironically due to the Los Angeles Dodgers announcing that right-handed starting pitcher Tony Gonsolin has been placed on the injured list with a forearm strain.
Entering their three-game road series against the Arizona Diamondbacks, the Phillies hold a 2 1/2-game lead over the San Diego Padres for the second Wild Card spot, and a four-game lead over the Milwaukee Brewers for the third and final spot. These lead amounts do not account for the head-to-head tiebreakers that interim manager Rob Thomson’s squad holds over both clubs — as there will be no Game 163s this season.
While the Phillies will need to take care of business on their own through the remaining 34 games, they will also lean on the Padres and Brewers to lose some games as well. Nine of the Padres’ remaining 33 games in 38 days will come against the Dodgers.
A Dodgers rotation that does not include Gonsolin — the Major League Baseball leader in wins (16), winning percentage (.941), and hits per nine innings (5.3), and the National League leader in ERA (2.10), ERA+ (197), and WHIP (0.865) — will only improve the Padres’ chances to win some crucial games down the stretch.
MLB.com’s Juan Toribio reports that the Dodgers are “confident” Gonsolin will return in enough time so he can get strong for an October run. Fingers crossed, Phillies fans.
The Dodgers also recently lost Walker Buehler due to undergoing season-ending elbow surgery. Meanwhile, Clayton Kershaw (back) has been sidelined since early August, but is expected to return this week — yet, who knows how close to 100 percent the future Hall of Famer will actually be, given his recent injury history.
Gonsolin, Buehler, and Kershaw are just three of the many Dodgers currently injured.
The Phillies are dealing with rotation concerns themselves, with Zack Wheeler on the injured list due to right forearm tendinitis. Given the Phillies will end the season on a 10-game road trip against the Chicago Cubs, Washington Nationals, and Houston Astros, they will need to stay ahead of the Padres and Brewers in the standings by as many games as possible to avoid a must-win scenario in this final stretch.
Hopefully, Gonsolin and Wheeler return healthy as soon as possible.