The Dodgers announced Thursday that they will wear a commemorative No. 36 patch this season in honor of Don Newcombe, who died Tuesday at age 92. The club will also hold pregame ceremonies to honor Newcombe on April 27. He will be inducted into the Legends of Dodgers Baseball, and the Dodgers will hand out Newcombe bobblehead figures.
The team previously wore such patches for Jim Gilliam in 1978, Tim Crews in 1993, Don Drysdale in 1993, Roy Campanella in 1993, Pee Wee Reese in 1999 and Duke Snider in 2011.
Newcombe spent eight of his 10 major-league seasons with the Dodgers in Brooklyn and Los Angeles. He won the 1949 National League rookie of the year award, was a member of the Dodgers’ 1955 championship team, and claimed the Cy Young and MVP awards in 1956.
The right-hander was the first player to win the rookie of the year, Cy Young and MVP awards in his career. Justin Verlander, who completed the troika in 2011, is the only other player in history to accomplish the feat. Newcombe was also the first African American to win 20 games in a major-league season, and to start a World Series game.
Daniel Corcino is expected to start Saturday. The right-hander appeared in two games for the Dodgers last season. Jaime Schultz, Kevin Quackenbush, Josh Sborz, Stetson Allie, Josh Smoker and Joe Broussard are planned to follow Corcino.
“It does give us an opportunity to see guys we really haven’t seen a whole lot,” manager Dave Roberts said. “But if you look at one through 12, 13, there’s some guys that really could make a strong case to make this club. So it’s going to be fun. The thing is right now, we have time.”
Roberts said the club has not determined when Clayton Kershaw and Walker Buehler would make their exhibition debuts. Kershaw has thrown two bullpen sessions and a live bullpen session against hitters since camp began. While Buehler didn’t throw his first bullpen until Wednesday as the Dodgers pushed his schedule back a week in hopes of lessening his workload.
The team will restrict Tony Cingrani’s workload this spring after the left-handed reliever was limited to 30 appearances last season because of a shoulder injury. The plan is for Cingrani, 29, who compiled a 4.76 earned-run average in 2018, to make “nine, 10 appearances” this spring in preparation for opening day, Roberts said.
“With Tony, he wasn’t right, and I think from the beginning of spring last year he put himself behind and he got off to a slow start,” Roberts said. “And then the health sort of bled into his season last year. But right now he looks really good. Strong — mechanically, physically. We’re going to take our time with Tony and just understand that we still have a lot of time so not try to get ahead of ourselves with him.”