The Los Angeles Dodgers were hoping that Clayton Kershaw would return to the rotation shortly after the All Star Break. That time frame has been pushed back a little longer.
According to Bill Plunkett from the Orange County Register, Kershaw had an MRI on his shoulder prior to the All Star Break. He then visited with Dr. Neal ElAttrache, who recommended that he let his shoulder heal. Dodgers’ manager Dave Roberts stated during an interview with MLB Network that they are hoping to get Kershaw back by the beginning of August.
Patience a virtue for Los Angeles Dodgers, Clayton Kershaw
It has to be tempting for the Dodgers to push Kershaw to return as soon as possible. Being told to rest his shoulder would seemingly indicate that everything is perfectly fine. Kershaw has also been the Dodgers’ best starting pitcher this year, a vital piece in the rotation as they battle the Diamondbacks and Giants for the NL West crown.
Getting Kershaw back around the trade deadline may be the best news that the Dodgers received. They are essentially slotting an ace back into their rotation, a battle tested veteran who is still performing as though he is in his prime. Kershaw has a 2.55 ERA and a 1.049 WHiP over his 95.1 innings, striking out 105 batters with just 24 walks. Although he is getting older, he is still one of the better pitchers in the game.
That is why the Dodgers need to be careful. Kershaw may still be a dominant force on the mound, but he cannot be counted on for a full season any longer. His innings and injury history have started to catch up. The Dodgers just need to make sure he is healthy when they need him down the stretch.
The Los Angeles Dodgers need to wait a little longer for Clayton Kershaw. That is going to be best for everyone involved.