Dodgers Injury Update: Clayton Kershaw Not Returning Once Immediately Eligible

The Los Angeles Dodgers were enjoying a renaissance from Clayton Kershaw to start the season, but it was brought to a halt after being placed on the 15-day injured list due to right SI joint inflammation.

Kershaw’s injury is often referred to as sacroiliitis and has much to do with the lower spine and the pelvis. The Dodgers placed him on the IL on May 8, which means the earliest Kershaw could return to the team was the middle of next week, and after missing a scheduled bullpen session on Wednesday, manager Dave Roberts indicated some uncertainty lies ahead.

“Just kind of where he’s at right now, he doesn’t feel — well, we don’t feel — that it makes any sense. So I don’t know when the next go at this will be,” Roberts said. “But I don’t see it in the next few days at the minimum.”

Although there has been lingering soreness following an epidural to alleviate pain in the lower back, Roberts noted Kershaw is not shut down.

“He’ll continue to play catch and stretch it out to then where we feel that he can get on the mound. So I just don’t know where that’s at. I think the initial plan was to have him play catch and be ready to go ‘pen [Wednesday], and we’re just not there yet.”

Kershaw’s MRI didn’t reveal any structural damage but with various back injuries dating to 2014, the Dodgers will not put a rush on his return.

“It’s treatment, it’s rest. It’s just time,” Roberts said of the recovery. “He’s not going to go with us to Philly and D.C. That’s kind of where we’re at right now.”

The Dodgers play 17 games in 17 days through June 5, and will most likely be without Kershaw for most, if not all of that run. His early-season success was definitely eye-opening, but nothing that surprised considering Kershaw has proven to be plenty effective when healthy.

Kershaw went 4-0 with a 1.80 ERA, 0.73 WHIP, and 32 strikeouts against three walks before being put on the IL. He hoped to be activated once eligible, but that no longer is feasible.

Tony Gonsolin learning from Clayton Kershaw

Tony Gonsolin turned in one of his best starts of the season on Monday as he pitched six innings while allowing just two runs on three hits, striking out seven and walking two.

Gonsolin has averaged 4.2 innings per start this season, and pitching deeper into games has been a focus for him. He was able to find success by looking to get outs quickly into an at-bat rather than always looking for a strikeout, and he relied on some help from Kershaw to find a way to achieve his goal.

“I’ve just been trying to get some early contact,” Gonsolin said. “Talked with Kersh a lot about how to go deeper into games, what works and what doesn’t work, and trying to figure out a way that works for me.”

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