Rockies’ Kyle Freeland, Scot Oberg Out For Opening Series Vs. Dodgers

The Los Angeles Dodgers are handful of days from beginning their World Series defense with an Opening Day matchup against the Colorado Rockies at Coors Field.

Clayton Kershaw gets the nod for his franchise-record ninth start in a season opener and first since the 2018 season. The Rockies are countering with German Marquez, who emerged as the staff ace last year.

As the Opening Series progresses, the Dodgers will hand the ball to Trevor Bauer, Walker Buehler and Julio Urias, in that order. As for the Rockies, one pitcher they could have countered with during the four-game set is Kyle Freeland.

However, the left-hander recently suffered a shoulder strain in a start against the Oakland Athletics and is expected to be sidelined for at least a month, via Anthony Castrovince of

Rockies left-hander Kyle Freeland figures to be out of action for at least a month after suffering a shoulder strain. But given how serious the injury appeared to be when Freeland exited Tuesday’s start against the A’s, that news is perceived as positive. An MRI confirmed the strain but did not reveal a more severe issue.

“We were worried about the significance of it,” manager Bud Black told reporters on Thursday. “But the findings showed that, based on the degree of the strain, it looks pretty promising for Kyle here moving forward.”

According to Patrick Saunders of The Denver Post, the Rockies also won’t have Scott Oberg due to surgery for blood clots that may end his career:

Scott Oberg’s baseball career might be over. The Rockies reliever underwent surgery Thursday night to remove blood clots in his right elbow, the Rockies confirmed. The operation took place at the Mayo Clinic in Scottsdale.

With Freeland on the shelf, the Rockies could look to replace him with one of Chi Chi González, Dereck Rodríguez or pitching prospect Ryan Rolison.

Freeland went 2-3 with a 4.33 ERA, 4.65 FIP and 1.42 WHIP in 13 starts last season. He enjoyed his best showing in 2018, when he won 17 games, posted a 2.85 ERA and accumulated 8.2 WAR in 202.1 innings.

Kershaw saw honor in Opening Day and Dodgers’ home opener

With Kershaw starting against the Rockies on Opening Day, it all but rules out the possibility of him starting in the Dodgers’ home opener against the Washington Nationals on April 9.

Kershaw nonetheless is honored to take the mound on Opening Day and didn’t have a preference of which game to pitch in. “Opening Day is a special thing, obviously. Whoever gets to do that, it’s obviously an honor,” he recently said.

“I think the home opener in and of itself this year is very special. First time at Dodger Stadium with fans in one year, after winning the World Series after 32 years. Regardless if there’s 10 fans or 2,500, whatever it is, it’s going to be a special day for all of us.

“I don’t know how the rotation lines up or anything, but Opening Day, home opener, they’re both going to be pretty special this year.”

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