Dodgers: Clayton Kershaw Gone Four to Six Weeks

LOS ANGELES, CA - JULY 23: Clayton Kershaw
LOS ANGELES, CA - JULY 23: Clayton Kershaw /

The Dodgers got the win, but there’s an enormous dark cloud hanging over the victory.

As you may have heard, Clayton Kershaw left Sunday’s game with lower back tightness and will be put on the 10-Day DL. He exited with trainers after two innings of work and 21 pitches. He had two strikeouts and allowed one walk. The back aspect of things should be worrisome because last year he missed ten weeks for the Dodgers due to herniated discs in his back. Now it may not be linked, but there’s always a good chance with injuries such as these.

At least we have a good idea of how much time he might miss.

Kershaw is the 24th different Dodgers to be put on the DL this year, and the franchise on track to break last year’s record of 28 players on the DL. His placement on the DL also marks the fact that every starter on the team has had at least one DL stint in 2017.

This is Kershaw’s third time missing time since 2014, so hopefully, he isn’t starting to become “injury-prone,” which is unfathomable because he has been known as a workhorse throughout his illustrious career.

He entered Sunday with a 2.07 ERA, 0.89 WHIP, and a 7.22 strikeout-to-walk ratio in 20 starts.

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Since he is sidelined for an extended period, it may increase the sense of urgency in acquiring a Yu Darvish, or someone of that caliber. Luckily LA has a double-digit lead in the division, so they should not have to rush their ace back.

His absence, along with Brandon McCarthy going back on the DL as well, opens up a few spots in the rotation. Kenta Maeda is expected to assume McCarthy’s place, but that still leaves one spot open.

Ross Stripling and Brock Stewart are the two most likely to get a shot. Stripling has been the swingman for Dave Roberts this year, coming in at different times from the bullpen throughout 2017. He has a 3.59 ERA in 42.2 innings this season. Stewart has tossed 13 scoreless innings in blue since being called up.

Another guy might be Justin Masterson, the veteran who has a 3.88 ERA in 19 starts for Triple-A OKC.

Next: Kersh V Max

Whatever the case, this is a scary time for fans and the franchise. All anyone can do is hold their breath.