It doesn’t seem right that we have spent more time documenting Clayton Kershaw injuries and recovery timelines than actual starts. Still, here we are. Dave Roberts gave a positive update on Saturday on exactly where Kershaw is at in regards to his return.
Ken Gurnick of MLB.com reports:
Clayton Kershaw will throw a simulated game in LA next week, then a bullpen session, then a rehab start before rejoining the rotation, Dave Roberts said.
— Ken Gurnick (@kengurnick) June 16, 2018
Again, Kershaw’s path back to Dodger Stadium will involve the familiar path of simulated game, bullpen session, and rehab start. If all goes well during those three events, Kershaw will rejoin the Dodgers’ rotation. If this feels like deja vu, you’re not crazy.
A simple google search of ‘Kershaw returns from DL’ will turn up a plethora of articles and highlights since 2016. The hope is that this time – the Dodgers’ ace is finally aligned perfectly for the second half of the 2018 season.
So far in the current campaign, Kershaw has thrown 49 innings. He is 1-4 with a 2.76 ERA, with the biggest positive being 53 strikeouts to 11 walks allowed. With numbers in line with his career norms, the key now is making as many starts as he can before the season ends. This should run parallel to the Dodgers’ postseason hopes being on the upswing.
In a strange way, Kershaw’s injuries could end up being a positive later in the season. Once again, the Dodgers have held serve in his absence; winning 20 of their last 26 ballgames. If Kershaw comes back healthy and remains for the rest of the season – there will be no talk of him being overworked when the calendar flips to September and October. Don’t be surprised if this is a storyline you hear late in the year by some pundits on television. The biggest key right now is the 30-year old getting through these three rehab steps as cleanly as possible without setback.
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