Dodgers pitcher Julio Urias was reinstated from paid administrative leave and activated Tuesday, eight days after he was arrested on suspicion of domestic battery.
The Dodgers announced Kyle Garlick was optioned to triple-A Oklahoma City to make room for Urías on the active roster.
The decision was made by the commissioner’s office in coordination with the Major League Baseball Players’ Assn. as outlined in baseball’s collective bargaining agreement. MLB’s investigation, however, remains ongoing. Once Urias is reinstated, the Dodgers must place him on the active major league roster. They cannot option him to the minor leagues.
Urias was put on seven-day administrative leave May 14, the day after he was accused by witnesses of shoving his girlfriend in the parking lot of the Beverly Center. Authorities reviewed surveillance footage, but the league has been unable to obtain video of the incident, according to a person with knowledge of the situation.
Major League Baseball began an investigation, as did the Los Angeles Police Department. The commissioner’s office could have requested another seven-day leave, suspended Urias or deferred discipline to a later date.
Urias, 22, remained in Los Angeles as of Monday evening but was expected to join the Dodgers on Tuesday in Tampa, where they begin a two-game series against the Rays.
Urias and his girlfriend insisted the incident was only a verbal altercation, according to law enforcement officials, but the video indicated the woman was pushed, according to a person familiar with the police probe.
Last year, Roberto Osuna received a 75-game suspension after an arrest on suspicion of assault. Major League Baseball extended Osuna’s administrative leave several times before enforcing the discipline; Osuna was placed on leave May 8 and was suspended June 22. In his case, the 75-game ban included the games Osuna, then a member of the Toronto Blue Jays, missed while on administrative leave. Criminal charges for Osuna were dropped.
Urias is regarded as a premier talent and future pillar for the Dodgers. He signed at age 16 in 2013 and made his major league debut three years later. His rise was hindered in June 2017 when he underwent surgery to repair a torn anterior capsule in his left shoulder. He returned from the career-threatening injury to pitch out of the bullpen for the Dodgers last September.
He began this season as a starter before moving to the bullpen as the Dodgers seeked to curtail his workload. He has a 2-2 record with two saves and a 3.18 earned-run average in 28⅓ innings. Before the administrative leave, Urias was serving as closer on nights Kenley Jansen was unavailable. In other games, he was pitching multiple innings as a long man.