The Los Angeles Dodgers reinstated Clayton Kershaw from the 60-day injured list and designated Steven Souza Jr. for assignment on Monday.
Kershaw returns to start the series opener against the Arizona Diamondbacks. The game is his first with the Dodgers since July 3, as the 33-year-old had been sidelined by left forearm inflammation/elbow soreness.
Kershaw’s initial attempt at a comeback stalled when he suffered a setback after pitching in a simulated game during the final week of July. Kershaw later admitted to rushing the recovery process but all the while maintained confidence he would return at some point this season.
After being temporarily shut down, Kershaw began a throwing program that led into multiple bullpen sessions and twice facing batters before making a rehab start for Triple-A Oklahoma City.
He went the targeted three innings last week, allowing two runs on four hits, including a homer, while collecting three strikeouts.
“It felt good getting to be back out there,” Kershaw said after the start. “Felt alright overall, stuff wasn’t that great, but I did it and got through it.”
Kershaw anticipates being able to fully stretch out with each start this month and be in position for a normal outing come October.
Souza was DFA’d by the Dodgers for a second time. He cleared waivers after the first instance and re-signed on a Minor League contract.
Souza has appeared in 17 games for the club, including four after getting called up from Oklahoma City earlier this month. Souza previously spent three weeks up with the Dodgers from June through July.
Kershaw uncertain about free agency
The Dodgers are on track to have several players reach free agency once the 2021 World Series concludes, and the group includes Kershaw.
A.J. Ellis recently said there was no chance Kershaw would ever play for another organization, though the left-hander more recently acknowledged he was not sure what unfold with free agency.
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