McDonald Gets A Break Today, Will Be Starter

There was the high-priced but battered arm of Jason Schmidt. There were the arms of other veteran journeyman pitchers.

But in the end, the Dodgers went with youth out of their farm system — James McDonald apparently will get the fifth starter spot in the pitching rotation.

Manager Joe Torre all but said rookie James McDonald will win that job.

"We're certainly intrigued with McDonald," Torre said. "McDonald is that guy ... we want to see more of."

The other contenders have pretty much backed out of the race and now the biggest threat to the rookie is a blister on the middle finger of his pitching hand that cut short his last start Thursday but didn't stop him from his full bullpen session two days later.

The Dodgers have had success when they have given up on the high priced veterans and just went with the talented youngsters. For example, Andre Either over Juan Pierre, or anybody over Jeff Kent last season.

If McDonald does falter, journeyman Jeff Weaver will be there to pick up the pieces. Weaver was added to the Dodgers roster as a long reliever today.

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