Dodgers News: Clayton Kershaw May Get Pushed Back From Twins Series

The Los Angeles Dodgers Opening Day rotation undeniably was going to include Clayton Kershaw, but where the three-time Cy Young Award winner would slot in remained unclear.

The Dodgers finalized their pitching plans on the eve of the 2022 regular season beginning when it was announced Tony Gonsolin and Julio Urías would follow Walker Buehler in the series against the Colorado Rockies.

Andrew Heaney, who already had been ruled out from pitching during the Opening Series, was subsequently named the probable for Tuesday’s game against the Minnesota Twins. That left Kershaw to make his 2022 debut at Target Field on Wednesday.

But with rain in the weather for both games, Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said the team is re-evaluating their starting pitching plans, according to Bill Plunkett of the Southern California News Group:

“We’re starting talks and figuring out what we’re going to do, as far as push guys back, just potential other ways we can manage them,” he said. “Nothing set in stone yet.”

If Kershaw is pushed back one day, it would line him up to start against the Cincinnati Reds in the opener at Dodger Stadium. That was an opportunity that was afforded to Walker Buehler last season as Kershaw started Opening Day.

That afforded Kershaw the opportunity to bask in the World Series ring ceremony without needing to prepare for an opponent. Circumstances of course are different this season, which could be Kershaw’s last with the Dodgers.

Why is Kershaw fifth in Dodgers rotation?

Kershaw not starting against the Rockies stemmed from still needing to fully stretch out and the Dodgers believing not sending him to the mound until the Twins series was beneficial for all.

“Just kind of how it played out,” Roberts said. “We’ve talked about this season and the start of this season as far as getting pitchers built up, and giving him the best opportunity.

“So to have him in the five slot allowed for him to get the full buildup, so now for him to go five (innings) and 75 (pitches), to then go into his first start, gives us a better chance not only that day but days following with him and managing the bullpen.”

Kershaw threw 75 pitches over five innings during a simulated game at Dodger Stadium last Thursday.

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