The Los Angeles Dodgers are set to welcome back an important member of their rotation this week as Clayton Kershaw will be activated off the 60-day injured list and start in Monday’s series opener against the Arizona Diamondbacks at Dodger Stadium.
The left-hander has been sidelined since early July due to left forearm inflammation, but he recently cleared his final hurdle by tossing three innings in a rehab appearance with Triple-A Oklahoma City, followed by a bullpen session, and not reporting any setbacks either time.
Kershaw’s start with the Dodgers comes on an extra day of rest, and he presumably will be stretched out to four innings or 60 pitches.
Kershaw likely will make four starts before the postseason, and though his role in October has yet to be officially determined, he hopes to build up his pitch count enough to earn a spot in the starting rotation.
Beyond that, there are more questions than answers as Kershaw is scheduled to become a free agent at the end of the season. He has thought about his future but couldn’t say with certainty where he will be playing next year, via Bill Plunkett of the Southern California News Group:
“Yeah,” the 33-year-old Kershaw said before pausing. “And I can honestly say I have no idea what’s going to happen. I really have no idea. I’m excited to pitch for now. I’m excited to pitch in the playoffs again – which is something I don’t want to take for granted. And then we’ll figure it out from there.”
Kershaw is in the final season of the three-year, $93 million contract extension he signed in November 2018. He previously spoke of his desire to remain with the only organization he’s known, but cautioned that he wasn’t sure how matters would unfold.
Along with Kershaw, the Dodgers will have decisions to make on Max Scherzer, Corey Seager and Chris Taylor, among others, who also are due to reach free agency at the conclusion of the season.
Ellis: ‘No chance’ Kershaw leaves Dodgers
One of Kershaw’s closest friends and former teammate A.J. Ellis recently went on the record to guarantee the future Hall of Famer will sign another contract with the Dodgers rather than play elsewhere next season.
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