After failing to sign a premier starting pitcher in the offseason, whether by their own accord or not, the Los Angeles Dodgers addressed their rotation by signing Scott Kazmir and Kenta Maeda. The two went on to remain healthy for much of the year while others around them were lost to injury.
However, Kazmir’s run with good health came to an end when he was placed on the 15-day disabled list on Aug. 23 with neck inflammation. That came one day after the southpaw failed to make it out of the third inning against the Cincinnati Reds.
Kazmir allowed four runs on six hits and walked three batters in 2.2 innings pitched. It was revealed after the game he’d been dealing with back and neck trouble. They were issues Kazmir had previously suffered from in his career.
After throwing a simulated game at Dodger Stadium in late August, the 32-year-old started in a rehab assignment for Triple-A Oklahoma City. Kazmir was removed in the first inning due to suffering a setback.
Upon returning to Los Angeles and being evaluated, he was diagnosed with a spinal injury, per Ken Gurnick of MLB.com:
Scott Kazmir, who underwent medical tests this week after leaving a Wednesday night rehab game with a recurrence of a thoracic injury, was diagnosed with thoracic spine inflammation. There is no timetable for his return.
Prior to learning of the results from the medical exams, Dodgers manager Dave Roberts surmised Kazmir would at least miss a couple weeks this month. The diagnosis appears to put Kazmir’s availability for potential postseason games in question.
Kazmir this season is 10-6 with a 4.59 ERA and 1.35 WHIP. His three-year, $48 million contract includes an opt-out clause after this season. The Dodgers are filling the immediate void by giving Jose De Leon a second career start, scheduled for Monday against the New York Yankees.