Los Angeles Dodgers left-hander Clayton Kershaw has been plagued by shoulder inflammation since the onset of Spring Training, limiting him in his throwing program while additionally preventing him from appearing in any Cactus League games to this point.
Despite the rough start to his 2019 campaign, things are looking up for Kershaw, as he has begun increasing his intensity with each time playing catch.
The three-time National League Cy Young Award winner has thrown on multiple occasions this week, including most recently on Saturday, in which he reportedly fared better but still showed signs of rust.
Dodgers manager Dave Roberts recently admitted that Kershaw hasn’t gotten in his usual amount of work at this point in Spring Training, but still wouldn’t rule him out of starting against the Arizona Diamondbacks on Opening Day, via Alanna Rizzo of SportsNet LA:
Roberts said the regular ramp up for Kershaw to be ready for Opening Day isn’t happening but the door isn’t closed on Opening Day.
— Alanna Rizzo (@alannarizzo) March 9, 2019
Should Kershaw be unable to start on Opening Day, his franchise record of eight consecutive starts would come to an end. In that scenario, one would imagine Walker Buehler stands a good chance at filling the void.
The right-hander has yet to pitch in a Cactus League game himself but is nearing the point of doing so. Ross Stripling would also benefit from a potential Kershaw disabled list stint, as he is first in line to enter the starting rotation should there be an opening.