11:58 p.m.: Roberts told Jack Harris and other reporters that Buehler will be unable to throw for 6-8 weeks.
While Buehler’s arm strength will have to be rebuilt from the ground up, Roberts believes the right-hander will be able to pitch again in 2022.
4:30PM: Dodgers manager Dave Roberts told reporters (including The Athletic’s Fabian Ardaya and The L.A. Times’ Jack Harris) that Walker Buehler will be placed on the 15-day injured list after leaving yesterday’s game with pain in his right elbow.
The organization has formally announced the trade, citing a right forearm injury as the reason for Buehler’s departure.
Buehler is getting an MRI to evaluate the extent and form of the injury, but Roberts expects him to be out for “a long period.”
Right-hander Michael Grove will be called up to fill Buehler’s spot on the active roster. Buehler had Tommy John surgery in 2015, and while he hasn’t had any severe elbow/forearm difficulties since, it’s understandably disconcerting to see him out with another ailment. More information will be available once the MRI results are released, as it is unclear whether Buehler’s season (or future) is in peril.
Even if Buehler isn’t quite his ace-level self in 2022, the Dodgers will have a significant hole in their starting rotation to fill. Buehler has a 4.02 ERA in 65 innings pitched, with a strong 6.2 percent walk rate but a below-average 21.2 percent strikeout rate and lackluster Statcast stats.
The main issue is Buehler’s four-seam fastball, which was a quality pitch at times from 2018 to 21, but batters have been teeing off on it this year. The average velocity has decreased to 95.2 mph, which isn’t far behind Buehler’s career average velo of 96.1 mph on his four-seamer.