Dodgers lefty Scott Kazmir is headed for an examination today as he deals with back and neck issues, as Andy McCullough of the Los Angeles Times was among those to tweet. The issue isn’t exactly a new one, but seems to be an occasionally recurring problem. As Bill Plunkett of the Orange County Register tweets, Kazmir says that he ends up having trouble picking up the target and keeping his right side closed when it flares up. It’s not yet clear whether a DL stint will be considered or whether there’s cause for broader concern. Regardless, it’s not great news for a Los Angeles team that has dealt with injuries to nearly every member of its rotation at one point or another this year.
Here are a few more notes out of Los Angeles:
- The Dodgers are at least finally set to welcome trade deadline acquisition Rich Hill to the rotation on Wednesday, as he is now officially scheduled to start an important tilt against Johnny Cueto and the Giants. Hill has been on the shelf for much longer than had been expected while waiting for a blister to heal and has yet to take the mound since arriving in L.A. over three weeks ago. A blister may not sound like much of an injury, but as Eric Nusbaum explores in great detail for Vice Sports, it’s a major problem for a pitcher.
- Dan Johnson, a 37-year-old former first baseman, has joined the Dodgers as a knuckleballing hurler, per an announcement from the indy league St. Paul Saints (with whom he was pitching). He’ll head to Double-A for the Los Angeles organization, where he’ll be reunited with Andrew Friedman — who was the GM of the Rays back when Johnson popped his famous home run for the organization. Johnson had returned to Tampa Bay for Spring Training this year, but wasn’t able to stick as a pitcher. Now, he’ll head to the Double-A level and try for an improbable return to the majors. Darren Wolfson of 1500 ESPN recently ran a story on Johnson that is well worth a look.