After his promising debut in 2016, the Dodgers’ Julio Urias dealt with injuries in 2017 and 2018 forcing him out of the spotlight. However, with Clayton Kershaw and Rich Hill sidelined with injuries to start the season, the young starter will get a chance to show off what he can do when fully healthy. Despite suffering from partial blindness in his left eye, Urias is one of the most intriguing young players on the Dodgers as he is still only 22 years old.
Speaking of which, just what exactly happened to Julio Urias’ left eye?
Julio Urias Eye: What Happened to the Dodgers’ Pitcher?
Julio Urias was born with benign mass in his left eye and over the years has undergone multiple procedures in order to help correct the eye. Most recently, Urias underwent a cosmetic procedure to help with the eye.
Urias still has some of the mass in his eye, causing the partial blindness and forcing him to keep the eye closed when he is pitching. According to Urias, he can see through the eye, just not very well. Urias has a sunny disposition towards his condition and even went as far as to say that:
“That’s how God works, He gave me a bad left eye but a good left arm.”
Julio Urias Starts Season In Dodgers’ Starting Rotation
The aforementioned injuries to Clayton Kershaw and Rich Hill should give Urias at least three to four starts in the rotation to prove he deserves to stay. While Kershaw recently started throwing again and is scheduled to make his first minor league rehab start on April 4th, Hill is a bit further behind and will likely not be returning to action at the big league level for another two months at least.
Urias will likely compete with fellow fill-in Ross Stripling to stay in the rotation upon Kershaw’s return in late April or early May. Stripling is coming off a career-best 2018 and opened up the 2019 season with 5.1 innings of scoreless baseball. With such a deep and talented rotation, it will be tough for Urias to work his way in. However, he has the talent to be a front-line starter and has shown competence throwing out of the bullpen. As a result, he will almost certainly stick around the big league club even if he loses his spot in the rotation and should have an opportunity to work his way up there.
Coming off major shoulder surgery, Urias looked solid during his limited run in the 2018 postseason but didn’t offer enough of a sample size to get a true reading on where he is at. 2019 should be a very telling year for Urias’ development and what caliber of pitcher he ultimately projects to be.