LOS ANGELES – Struggling Los Angeles Dodgers right-hander Kenta Maeda has lost his spot in the starting rotation, manager Dave Roberts announced on Wednesday.
Maeda, who went 16-11 last year, is currently 4-3 with a 5.16 ERA in 10 starts in his second season in the major leagues.
He will go to the bullpen to make room for the return of left-hander Alex Wood from the disabled list.
Wood will start on Saturday, with Ryu Hyun-jin getting the call on Sunday. Maeda will be available for long relief, according to a report on the Dodgers’ website.
“This is not temporary for Kenta. We need him to get back on track and pitch well,” the report quoted Roberts as saying. “He’s open to it, and it’s a credit to him as a teammate.”
The Dodgers chose to bump Maeda instead of Ryu, who has already been removed from the rotation once this year, but is coming off a seven-inning start Monday against Washington, the report said.
“It’s Kenta understanding the value of giving us innings as a starter or in the ‘pen, he’s doing whatever’s best for the team,” Roberts said.
“We’re going with the five guys we feel give us the best chance to win right now. We did that with Hyun-jin, and it was only one appearance (a four-inning save). He was put back in the rotation with Alex’s injury, and he’s pitched well.”
It is the first time Maeda has been dropped from the rotation since moving to the majors because of poor form.
“I just have to get on with it, simple as that,” said Maeda.
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