Dodgers News: Trade with Pirates, Clayton Kershaw progress, loss to Rangers

Pittsburgh Pirates v New York Mets
Pittsburgh Pirates v New York Mets / Sarah Stier/GettyImages

Less than 10 minutes into Game 3 of the Dodgers-Rangers series on Thursday night, Michael Grove was serving as the opener for LA and had already given up two singles to Josh Smith and Adolis García, with Nathaniel Lowe about to knock in the first run of the night for Texas on an RBI groundout.

It was probably a weird time to announce a trade, but the Dodgers did it anyway, revealing that they had acquired lefty reliever Jose Hernández from the Pirates in exchange for cash considerations. The trade marks a return to LA for Hernández, who signed with the Dodgers as an international free agent in 2016 but never made it to the majors with the organization. He was picked up by the Pirates during the 2022 Rule 5 draft and made his debut in Pittsburgh in 2023.

He's pitched 56 major league innings in total (only 5 1/3 this year, for a 3.38 ERA), and was DFA'ed by the Pirates on June 11. To make room on the roster, the Dodgers moved Ryan Brasier from the 15-day IL to the 60-day. He's been out since April 28 with a calf strain, and though he seemed to be making good progress halfway through May, it seems things have taken a more severe turn.

Dodgers News: Clayton Kershaw ahead of schedule, LA drops series to Rangers

After the trade for Hernández, the Dodgers went on to lose Thursday night's game against the Rangers 3-1, with the lone LA run coming off of an Andy Pages (making up for his baserunning error the night before) homer. The highlight of the game was, unfortunately, Rangers reliever David Robertson taking Mookie Betts, Shohei Ohtani, and Freddie Freeman down swinging in the eighth.

It was the second time he was able to do that in just two days; in Game 2, he looked like he was on his way to an immaculate inning until he ran into Freeman, who eventually struck out after a nine-pitch battle.

In more promising injury-related news, Clayton Kershaw continues to make good progress and seems to be way ahead of schedule for return from a shoulder surgery last November. He threw a sim game at Dodger Stadium ahead of Thursday's game and is officially on his way to his first rehab start in Single-A next Thursday. Kershaw said he's not exactly excited about a rehab stint, "but it’s a necessary evil. It’s something you gotta do."

Given Kershaw's original estimate that he'd be back in late July or early August, this is a huge win for the Dodgers.