Los Angeles Dodgers 37-year-old left-hander Ted Lilly made his first rehab start on Friday, and it was a rocky one overall. Lilly, who is suffering from a left shoulder injury, allowed five runs in six innings, with the three home runs he allowed being the killers. It sounds like Lilly’s outing was a disaster, but he did manage to stay in for six innings without any health setbacks and did manage to strike out four batters for High-A Rancho Cucamonga.
According to the Dodgers MLB.com blog, Lilly will make his next rehab start tomorrow, but he will get a move on up to Triple-A Albuquerque. Lilly is currently on the disabled list retroactive to the 29th of March, so he is eligible to return on the 13th of this month. He also had a flu in Spring Training and has needed to build up strength coming off of shoulder labrum surgery. It’s been a rough past couple of months for Lilly, and it might not get any easier.
Why? Even after Lilly comes off of the disabled list, he won’t be getting any work in the Dodgers rotation. Their starting five is filled to the brim, so there’s no room for Lilly. If there was any possibility of Lilly getting in some relief work, Dodgers manager Don Mattingly squashed all hopes of Lilly working out of the bullpen by saying Lilly wouldn’t be fit to pitch in relief.
The Dodgers are still trying to shop Lilly since there is no space for him, so hopefully the veteran finds greener pastures soon. It’s taken quite some time, and the Dodgers still haven’t been able to find the right trade partner. However, they recently dished Aaron Harang (similar situation as Lilly’s, minus the shoulder issue and the dreaded flu) to the Colorado Rockies, and it is always easier to find trade partners during the season. Here’s to hoping the best to Lilly in his recovery, rehab start tomorrow, and future opportunities with a new ballclub (since it will likely come to that). Lilly, by the way, is expected to have a couple of more rehab starts after this next one.