Dodgers rout Rockies to open a 12-game lead in the NL West

The Dodgers opened an eight-game journey with a 13-0 blowout against the Colorado Rockies at Coors Field on Thursday.

And it might not even have been the team’s most important development of the day.

After seven scoreless innings from Tyler Anderson and the second-highest offensive hit of the season, the Dodgers improved to 66-32 and extended their National League West lead to 12 games over the idle San Diego Padres.

“Tonight was just an all round good day to be a Dodger,” said manager Dave Roberts.

Including for a couple of injured pitchers who are now recovering.

While the Dodgers dominated the Rockies (45-55), right-hander Dustin May made his second rehab start with Triple-A Oklahoma City after returning from Tommy John’s surgery. And Thursday’s outing went much better than the first.

Unlike last week, when May struggled with his command during a two-inning appearance, the 24-year-old hit six batters in three scoreless innings. He only gave up two hits. He touched 99.9 mph with his sinker. And he found the zone with 32 of his 46 spots.

Ahead of Thursday’s outing, Roberts said May will have at least one more rehab start next week. The team will then assess his progress, although it’s likely he’ll need another assignment after that.

In any case, May remains on track to return to the major league roster sometime next month — which should give the Dodgers time to decide whether he’s willing to be part of their playoff starting rotation or take on a hybrid role similar to his use in previous postseasons.

Reliever Blake Treinen is on a similar path.

Roberts announced Thursday afternoon that Treinen, who has remained in Los Angeles, will face live hitters on Friday for the first time since his shoulder injury in April — a key step in the helper’s carefully managed recovery process.

The news came just two days after Roberts originally said the right-hander was a few weeks away from facing a live punch.

Dodgers pitcher Tyler Anderson works against the Colorado Rockies.

Dodgers pitcher Tyler Anderson works in the first inning Thursday in Denver against the Colorado Rockies.

(David Zalubowski/Associated Press)

Since then, however, Treinen said after several weeks of routine bullpen sessions, he felt ready to take the next step forward in his rehab.

“[He’s] getting closer,” Roberts said of when Treinen could return to the active squad. “I still don’t see Blake coming back for the next three weeks. So end of August makes sense.”

For the Dodgers, the status of Treinen and May will not only be crucial in October, but could also help how they approach Tuesday’s close.

If the team believes these two pitchers — as well as several other injured arms including Walker Buehler, Brusdar Graterol, Tommy Kahnle, Danny Duffy and Victor González — can contribute on the stretch, it could lessen their need to strengthen pitching staff.

Conversely, if those players fall behind schedule or suffer setbacks, it could increase the team’s urgency to find reinforcements on the mound — calculations Andrew Friedman, president of baseball operations, said last week the team’s front office would need days are coming.

“We don’t need anything,” Roberts said this week. “But any team can always get better if they go forward. So if there’s anything worthwhile, I have every confidence in our guys that they’ll pull the trigger.”

Meanwhile, the Dodgers’ current roster continued its role through July on Thursday, rising to 19-4 this month by achieving its most lopsided win of the season.

Anderson scored the team’s seventh shutout of the season — reliever Jake Reed and infielder Hanser Alberto also pitched scoreless innings — after shaking off an early argument when Rockies manager Bud Black asked the umpires early in the game to wipe the left-hander’s rosin stain on edge of his cap.

“There was a little residue, residual material [from the] rosin on his hat,” Roberts said. “They just wanted to remove it.”

The Dodgers’ offense, meanwhile, yielded a three-hit, three-RBI performance from Trea Turner, three RBIs from Will Smith and three hits from Gavin Lux on a night that everyone in the lineup safely equaled at least once.

“We just put it on early,” Lux said, “and tried to play downhill from there.”

Rios plays for Oklahoma City

Edwin Ríos began a rehab assignment in Oklahoma City on Thursday, nearly two months after the infielder went down from a hamstring strain. Roberts said the team hasn’t decided how long it will take Ríos with the minors. They want the slugger to get consistent playing time after only playing 52 big league games in the last two seasons.

https://www.latimes.com/sports/dodgers/story/2022-07-28/dodgers-rockies-gamer-tyler-anderson Dodgers rout Rockies to open a 12-game lead in the NL West

Emma Bowman

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