Although the Los Angeles Dodgers have not officially clinched a playoff berth, a calculation error from MLB had the team celebrating their impending postseason return slightly early.
The Dodgers didn’t have a big celebration, but manager Dave Roberts addressed the team with a champagne toast while players were provided with caps that featured a 2022 MLB postseason logo on them. It’s highly improbable the Dodgers don’t clinch a playoff spot, but they still need one more win or one more Milwaukee Brewers loss to officially do so.
Although making the playoffs has become the norm for many players in the clubhouse, it’s an entirely new experience for some as well.
Andrew Heaney has been a Major League player for nine seasons, but this is the first time in his career he’ll be part of a team that’s heading to the postseason and he’s thrilled to get the opportunity, via Bill Plunkett of the Southern California News Group:
“This is the first time I’ve ever been on a playoff team,” he said after allowing just two runs (and only one home run) in five innings Sunday. “I was joking with some guys, it’s ho-hum for them. But I was like, ‘This a big deal for me.’ “Last year was tough for me. Got optioned then DFA’d a couple days before the end of the season. I watched the Yankees celebrate, pop champagne. I was sitting in a hotel room by myself. That was a pretty low point for me. So now to be on a team like this and hopefully be contributing to it, trying to hold my weight and do what I can to help us win — this is something that I relish, for sure.”
Heaney has dealt with two shoulder injuries throughout the season that have limited his time on the mound, and more recently his home run issues have returned, but he has still been one of the Dodgers’ most effective starters when healthy and able to pitch.
Despite his concerning home run troubles, the Dodgers remain confident in his ability due to his elite stuff and high strikeout numbers. He should play an important role for the club this October, whether it’s in a starting role or as a multi-inning relief option.
Dodgers reliever Blake Treinen dealing with ‘buildup-related’ soreness
After returning from the 60-day injured list, Blake Treinen only made two appearances before going on the 15-day IL with what the team called right shoulder tightness. More specifically, Roberts indicated the current issue is in the lat area.
With less than a month remaining in the regular season, Treinen doesn’t have a long window to recover, but the 34-year-old said he is improving and his shoulder isn’t bothering him, which gives some hope he’ll be able to return before the postseason.
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