WASHINGTON — Brandon McCarthy, limited to 16 starts this year, pitched six innings for Double-A Tulsa on Friday night, and Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said the right-hander will rejoin the club when it returns home next weekend.
Roberts said initially McCarthy would be in the Dodgers’ crowded bullpen, but didn’t rule out a start. McCarthy has had another troubled year with issues ranging from finger blisters to knee soreness to wildness. He’s been on his third stint on the disabled list since July 24.
“He went [six] innings — blister fine, knee fine, gave up a few runs but pitched well,” said Roberts.
The Dodgers already are juggling a six-man rotation. Hyun-Jin Ryu — skipped last cycle — will return to the mound to start Sunday. Kenta Maeda, also just skipped, is scheduled to start the road-trip finale in Philadelphia on Thursday. Clayton Kershaw, Yu Darvish and Alex Wood will pitch the other three games in Philadelphia.
McCarthy would give the Dodgers a full 40 active players, including 10 September callups. One of them, Alex Verdugo, is in the doghouse after missing the team bus on Friday and showing up at Nationals Park moments before the team took the field for batting practice.
Verdugo, the Dodgers’ No. 2 prospect, was aired out by veteran teammates and Roberts also spoke to the rookie outfielder, who said he overslept for a night game.
“We had a conversation and he was very apologetic and he understands he let the team down,” Roberts said. “It won’t happen again, he assured me, but it’s part of the learning curve. He’s a young player, first time in the big leagues and he’s trying to do the right thing.
“It’s important for the young guys to keep their eyes and ears open and watch how these guys go about their business. It’s a special opportunity for these young guys, this is a golden opportunity for them.”
Ken Gurnick has covered the Dodgers since 1989, and for MLB.com since 2001. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.