Clayton Kershaw resigned Friday to be ready for the 2021 season.
The Dodgers lefthander said it “doesn’t look great for October” after making his start vs. had to leave the Brewers in the second inning due to forearm discomfort. He missed more than two months from early July to mid-September with a similar condition.
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“I just felt something in my elbow in the second inning,” Kershaw said. ‘Forearm, elbow, I don’t know what it is. Kind of the same thing I’ve been dealing with.’
He hinted at the seriousness of the latest injury by excluding himself from the playoffs. The Los Angeles postseason starts next week in the National League wildcard game or one of the NL Division Series. LA follows the Giants with two games in western NL with two games left, but it has already secured at least a wildcard spot.
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“I know we’re going to do something special this year and I wanted to be a part of that. That’s the hardest thing for me right now, which is knowing, chances are it’s not looking great for October right now. is going to be fun to watch,” Kershaw said. He said he will be examined “in the coming days”. MLB.com reported that Kershaw will undergo a test on Saturday.
Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said the team is “just not too optimistic at the moment” about Kershaw, given how much time is left in the season.
“I don’t want to read too much into it now, but when I came down the hill it wasn’t a good feeling for anyone,” he said.
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Kershaw, 33, was limited to 22 starts and 121 2/3 innings this year due to injuries. He posted a 3.55 ERA and strikeouts 10.65 per nine innings.
As serious as losing Kershaw is, the Los Angeles rotation is deep enough to last at least a wildcard game and a five-game NLDS. Max Scherzer (1.98 ERA), Walker Buehler (2.49 ERA) and Julio Urias (3.01 ERA) are the top three starters and Tony Gonsolin (3.23 ERA) can fill in as a No. 4. David Price was in the rotation from around the All -Star breaks through in late August before returning to the bullpen.
The Dodgers have put together about 20 bullpen games this year, but that may not be a good option in the playoffs. Stricter roster restrictions in the postseason will make it difficult for the front office to manipulate pitching staffing positions like in the regular season. A player who is removed from the active roster during a playoff round will not be eligible for the remainder of that round and the entire following round.