Walker Buehler Returns to the Injured List

Walker Buehler Returns to the Injured List

The Los Angeles Dodgers face another setback as Walker Buehler heads back to the injured list due to right hip inflammation. This latest development adds another chapter to Buehler's recent history of challenges since missing most of 2022 and all of 2023 following his second Tommy John surgery.

Early Career Success

From 2018 to 2021, Buehler was a linchpin in the Dodgers' rotation, demonstrating remarkable consistency and talent. During that period, he won 39 games and maintained an ERA never above 3.44. His performances made him a cornerstone for the team and a key player in their pitching lineup.

2024 Struggles After Comeback

However, Buehler's return in 2024 has been less than triumphant. Since making his comeback on May 8, 2024, he has struggled, posting a 1-4 record with a 5.84 ERA in eight starts. His most recent outing in Colorado epitomized his current struggles. Despite taking a line drive off the hip, Buehler stayed in the game but surrendered seven runs on seven hits, including two home runs.

Dodgers manager Dave Roberts revealed that Buehler's hip had been sore for several starts. Roberts expressed a desire for Buehler to use the injured list stint to regroup both physically and mentally, in hopes that rest and recovery would bring him back to top form.

Bobby Miller Activated

In a corresponding move, the Dodgers activated Bobby Miller, who has not pitched since April 10 due to right shoulder inflammation. In his second major league season, Miller has shown promise, posting a 1-1 record with a 5.40 ERA in three starts this year. His rookie year in 2023 was particularly impressive and highlighted his potential as a reliable pitcher for the Dodgers.

Miller's return adds much-needed depth to a Dodgers pitching staff plagued by injuries. His presence in the rotation offers hope as the team navigates the challenges posed by Buehler's absence.

Looking Forward

Despite his recent struggles, Buehler's career statistics remain impressive, boasting a 47-20 record and a 3.17 ERA over seven seasons. The Dodgers are optimistic that his time on the injured list will allow him to recover and return to his prior form. Buehler's resilience and dedication to the team provide a glimmer of hope for a triumphant comeback.

Injuries are an inevitable part of Major League Baseball, and the Dodgers have shown remarkable depth and flexibility in handling these challenges. The activation of Bobby Miller is a testament to this resilience and provides a strategic cover for Buehler's absence. As the team moves forward, all eyes will be on Buehler's recovery and eventual return to the mound.

Manager Dave Roberts acknowledged Buehler's struggles and the journey ahead, stating, "I think [he's] a little bit sort of finding himself again. I think he's still in search mode. So, as he's getting back to health, I think for the mind and some clarity, I think this will be a good thing."

Buehler himself expressed his frustrations but remained focused on contributing to the team, saying, "It sucks to feel kind of invaluable, or like you're hampering your team. At the end of the day, we really like our team and want to be ready for the end of the year. And I'm going to do whatever I need to do to feel like I can help our team at the end of the year, and do everything in my power to be valuable enough to be on those rosters."

As the Dodgers navigate this latest hurdle, the focus remains on health, recovery, and readiness for the crucial stages of the season. Walker Buehler's journey back to his peak form will be closely monitored, with the hope that he can once again become the formidable force he once was for the Dodgers.