The Dodgers placed Clayton Kershaw on the 15-day injured list, retroactive to June 30, due to soreness in his throwing shoulder. L.A. also optioned reliever Victor González to Triple-A Oklahoma City. Righties Michael Grove and Gavin Stone have been recalled to take the active roster spots.
There’s no indication it’s a worrisome issue. Kershaw has felt the soreness for the past few days. The Dodgers held off until this evening to determine whether he’d be able to make his scheduled start tonight against Pittsburgh. That won’t happen, but Dodgers’ beat reporters (including Juan Toribio of MLB.com) noted that Kershaw was on the field throwing long toss.
Dave Roberts also downplayed any concern. The Los Angeles manager told reporters the club was confident Kershaw would be eligible to jump back into the rotation coming out of next week’s All-Star Break (relayed by Fabian Ardaya of the Athletic). Keeping Kershaw out of action through the Break avoids pushing his shoulder and also serves as a way to monitor his innings.
The three-time Cy Young award winner has made 22 starts in each of the last two seasons, coming in just under 130 frames in each. He’d already gotten up to 17 starts and 95 1/3 innings this year. While Kershaw is no longer capable of carrying league-high workloads as he did during his peak, he remains one of the sport’s most effective arms. Kershaw sports a 2.55 ERA and was selected to his tenth All-Star Game over the weekend. Obviously, he won’t participate in the Midsummer Classic, meaning he’ll be replaced on the National League roster.
Grove will get the start tonight against the Bucs. The righty has taken the ball nine times (seven starts) on the season. Over 37 innings, he has a 7.54 ERA and is allowing just under two homers per nine. Neither Grove nor Stone has filled in as hoped in depth roles this year, making the starting staff a potential deadline focus for the front office. Kershaw joins Dustin May, Noah Syndergaard, Ryan Pepiot and Walker Buehler (the latter two of whom haven’t pitched all season) on the injured list.