The depth of the Los Angeles Dodgers’ 40-man roster has really come into play after injuries befell many of the team’s key players this season.
Sensational September call-ups from Corey Seager, speedy Jose Peraza (who unfortunately could be lost for the rest of the year with a hamstring strain) Scott Schebler, and the acquisition of Justin Ruggiano have helped the Dodgers maintain a stronghold on the National League West despite the plethora of injuries. It is quite amazing that a team which has suffered so many injuries, including early season exits from two of their starting pitchers, is still atop the division with such a large lead.
Carl Crawford became the latest Dodger to miss time due to an injured hamstring. Crawford, who had been in a seemingly healthy hot streak of late, once again has been bogged down with hamstring woes. Crawford previously missed a huge chunk of the season, nearly three months, due to a torn oblique. The Dodgers already have Howie Kendrick, Yasiel Puig and Kiké Hernandez sidelined with hamstring strains.
Even Mark Saxon of ESPN LA had to find some humor during this hamstring strain epidemic:
After covering this team all year, I now have right hamstring tightness, like Carl Crawford
— Mark Saxon (@markasaxon) September 13, 2015
Even though hamstring injuries have been rampant for the Dodgers the last few seasons, the cluster of hamstring injuries which have disabled right-handed hitters Puig, Kendrick and Hernandez this year have really stirred up many questions to why this type of injury has become so frequent and what can be done as far as prevention.
According to Saxon’s article:
Mattingly said the Dodgers’ medical staff is undergoing an internal review to ‘evaluate themselves and make sure they’re not missing anything.’
Mattingly had this to say on the flurry of hamstring issues:
I’ve been with different teams over the years, and sometimes it’s the obliques,” Mattingly said. “This year, for us, it’s the hamstrings that have cost us.”
Perhaps an external as well as internal review over the medical staff would be beneficial in order to find ways to insure subsequent hamstring injuries are kept to a minimum. Even though it is difficult to prevent these types of injuries from happening 100 percent of the time, there seems to be a troubling increase in such injuries for the Dodgers this year.
Strength and conditioning as well as rehabilitation programming could all play a part in the year-long battle with hamstring strains for this team. Although live-game action is hard to simulate in practice or rehab, there has to be a way to incorporate more posterior thigh muscle awareness within the exercise and conditioning schedules for the players. Perhaps even investment in research into the science of sports injury could also be a long-term plan for Major League Baseball, as well.
CONTINUE READING: The Dodgers have been hurt by injuries before.