Clayton Kershaw Experiencing Early Spring Setback


Only one week of Dodgers‘ spring training is in the books, and already there is a sigh of “here we go” amongst the fans.

Clayton Kershaw has been sidelined from throwing bullpens for the next few days, after reporting he didn’t feel quite right during his most recent live batting practice session on Wednesday. He was given Thursday off to rest.

According to Alanna Rizzo, he’s not feeling 100% physically and will be taking it easy for awhile. He’s doing his other workouts, but will not even be playing catch for the time being.

“No ones alarmed or worried about it”, manager Dave Roberts told reporters Friday morning. “There’s plenty of time for him to get his bullpens in and get built up.”

Well, sure there is. But when your mega-million dollar, generational pitcher who has been injury prone in the past is having issues just a couple of bullpen sessions in, one can’t help but worry.

“Is it dead arm? It could be,” Roberts went on to say. “We’ll see about that as we get moving forward.”

Not entirely sure what ‘dead arm’ means myself, I went looking for a good explanation. My basic synopsis is that it is when the arm is tired, but not yet injured. It can happen a lot in spring training, as the pitcher is ramping up his throwing.

It would make sense that Kershaw’s arm is tired. He’s pitched 2096.1 innings in his illustrious career, and deep into the playoffs for the last several. Even though he arm was “rested” while he was sidelined dealing with some back issues, he’s been a work horse for the team for the last 11 seasons.

“When he says he doesn’t feel right, you’re looking at the calendar, just to push things back is prudent and that’s what we’re doing right now,” said Roberts. “So to say when he’s going to throw his next ‘pen, I can’t say right now. And we’re sort of leaving that to him and the trainers to figure out when that is. But right now, to just kind of step away, give him a couple days, I think that’s what we want to do.”

Let’s just all hope that’s it’s fatigue, that the trainers get him and his arm all rested up, and it’s just an early blip on this season’s radar.


14 thoughts on “Clayton Kershaw Experiencing Early Spring Setback

  1. They jinxed him by announcing he was the opening day pitcher so early. Usually, although we all know who it will be, they wait until longer into ST to make the announcement. This is where Brock Stewart slowly starts working his way up the ladder to ultimately be our starter in game 1 of the WS this year. Kind of like the guy starting in the last row of the Indy 500 and winning the race. Go Brock!

    1. Nice try Jefe. Urias moves up. Stripling moves up. And – this may be nothing.

      Keuchel is still out there.

      1. Of course it’s something. You can tell by the vagueness of all the statements from everyone. They’re probably just trying to figure out If they can trade for Kluber or Bauer or sign Keuchel before they announce what’s really the matter. Does anyone know how insurance works. Does a player have to miss an entire year for the team to get compensated or is it pro-rated or what?

      2. Yeah, I re-read some things this morning. You’re right, it’s something. But I doubt Kluber is available. Cleveland is expected to win the Central and their chances would be diminished without him. Bauer could be available but he’d cost us a couple of top prospects. Especially under these conditions. Keuchel might put us over the tax limit. I think if we go outside the organization another dumpster dive is the likely move.

    1. Actually Rich, Koufax’s retirement was not due to injury. He had to retire because of arthritis in his elbow. The arthritis was so bad that the Dr. said he could keep on pitching, and in the end lose use of his left arm, or retire and keep the ability to use the arm for every day task’s. Koufax chose to retire, and he retired even though the front office, mainly Buzzie Bavasi , asked him to wait until they could make a deal for another pitcher, but Sandy went ahead and made the announcement anyway. His spot on the roster was taken by lefty Mike Kekich.

      1. Sounds like a result of injury to me Bear. Post traumatic arthritis. Inflammation was so severe he couldn’t lift his arm. I heard a story in high school…. the Dodgers gave out used baseball under shirts to local high schools and even after sanitizing them one was still so saturated with Atomic Balm the kid who got the shirt had to take it off. I heard he put it under glass and mounted it on the wall in his bedroom.

        Kershaw might be ok after some rest but this might not bode well for him being the ace of this staff. I can see an immediate innings limit being implemented. What I hadn’t read was that he threw only 22 pitches, quit, then threw a standard bullpen two days later and “did not feel better”. Shut down indefinitely. He was DL’d for biceps tendinitis last year. I’m not going to panic, but I am going to look ahead. I see Stripling listed in front of Urias on the depth chart. I’m guessing that’s because Urias is on an early pitch count. Stripling doesn’t project more than 100 innings on any site and his ERA doesn’t project that close to his 3.02 last year. More like 3.6. And 90 innings. If he’s the replacement planned for Kershaw?…….. we’re going to need a bigger boat.

        Kershaw, Buehler, Ryu, Hill, Maeda, Stripling, Urias. Has anyone checked the IP projections for all these guys? Keep the bullpen stable filled with fresh arms. I think they could be Top 10 in innings pitched this year.

      2. The only injury I can remember Sandy having was not really an injury either. He had a circulatory problem in his pitching hand in 1962. A problem that in all likelihood cost the Dodgers the pennant in 62 because he was not available down the stretch. He was 14-2 on the 12th of July and did not pitch another game that year. Dr.s were worried they would have to amputate his finger. It was pretty raw and people said it looked like raw meat. It finally healed and Sandy had probably the best 4 year stretch of any pitcher in MLB history. His arthritis was the result of wear and tear on the elbow as he suffered no significant elbow damage as a result of injury. Berra said, he could understand how Sandy could win 25. What he could not understand was how he lost 5.

  2. As you know my friend, I think projections are worthless. No person can predict what any player is going to do. Most are way off anyway.

    1. I understand you don’t value them. But others do. Including me.

      And I think it’s splitting hairs and dancing around semantics as far as Koufax is concerned. His hand “healed”. Healed from what? Maybe it wasn’t an injury from a knife or a concrete block dropped on it, but it was trauma of some sort or it wouldn’t have needed to heal. Same with his elbow. The inflammation was obviously caused by overuse. (650 innings in his last 2 years) That inflammation is trauma. Trauma by definition is injury. Not an identifiable accident, but clearly injurious to a 30 year old. Sandy once said if Kerlan and Jobe had thought of the surgery a couple years earlier they would be calling it Sandy Koufax surgery. It’s still unclear how long he pitched without a functional ligament in his elbow.

      1. Koufax said that injury was suffered while he was hitting, and it happened the year before. He had changed from being a RH hitter to batting left so his pitching arm would not be exposed He was jammed by a pitch, and it was that what led to the circulation problem.

  3. Well I think injury free you might be able to predict Mike Trout will have a pretty good year. That’s what makes players a superstar and it’s an overused term in today’s sports. I wouldn’t use the term for Harper

  4. After watching the first two innings of today’s game, I can tell you that we will win the World Series this year. We look great. Martin (DH) and Barnes have already had back to back doubles, Kike looks great (seems to have lost a little weight), Yimi pitched a good inning, striking out their great prospect Jimenez. Hill only needed 9 pitches to get out of his inning. It’s all good folks. No worries.

  5. Former Dodgers report….Kemp 1-2 with a 2 run homer. Puig 0-2….Farmer 1-1 with an RBI double. Kemp and Farmer drove in all the Reds runs in a 3-3 tie with Cleveland. Allie was impressive, 3 outs on 5 pitches. Pederson hit’s the first HR of the spring. Kike 2-3 with a 2B. Beaty had a couple of impressive at bats also.

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