Clayton Kershaw Throwing Program on Hold Amid Possible Arm Injury

Kyle Newport@@KyleNewportFeatured ColumnistFebruary 22, 2019

Los Angeles Dodgers' Clayton Kershaw waits during a spring training baseball workout Wednesday, Feb. 13, 2019, in Glendale, Ariz. (AP Photo/Morry Gash)
Morry Gash/Associated Press

Los Angeles Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw's throwing program has been put on hold after he experienced an arm issue this week. 

"For us right now, Clayton doesn't want to miss a workout but when he says he doesn't feel right, just looking at the calendar just to push things back is prudent and that's what we're doing right now," Los Angeles manager Dave Roberts said on Friday, according to Bill Plunkett of the Los Angeles Daily News.

Per Plunkett, Kershaw threw to hitters on Monday and had a bullpen session on Wednesday

There is currently no timetable as to when the left-hander will resume throwing, although his skipper called the issue "sort of a day-to-day thing."

"We'll see how he feels tomorrow," Roberts said, per Plunkett. "To say when he's going to throw his next [bullpen], I can't say right now. We're sort of leaving that to him and the trainers to figure out when that is. But right now, to step away and give him a couple days I think that’s what we're going to do."

Given it's less than a week into camp, there is absolutely no reason to rush Kershaw back on the mound—especially given his recent injury history.

After averaging 222 regular-season innings from 2010 to 2015, Kershaw has had a tough time staying healthy the past few years. He has averaged just 25 starts over the last three seasons, mainly due to back issues.

He was, however, sidelined for nearly a month in 2018 due to right biceps tendonitis.

This latest injury doesn't appear to be related to his past issues, though.

"Just kind of an arm kind of thing. Not back. Not fatigue," Roberts said, per Plunkett. "He did great work this past winter. It's more of just you don’t feel right, let's kind of get back in the weight room, get treatment and kind of get back and reset."

Even with recent injury concerns, the Dodgers were willing to sign the three-time National League Cy Young winner to a three-year, $93 million extension back in November. That came after he went 9-5 with a 2.73 ERA and a 1.041 WHIP in 26 starts in 2018, striking out 155 batters in 161.1 innings.

A new deal gave the 30-year-old an opportunity to silence his critics.

"It gives me a chance to prove a lot of people wrong," Kershaw said after signing the extension. "I think this year especially—maybe rightfully so—there's been a lot of people saying that I'm in decline or I'm not going to be as good as I once was. I'm looking forward to proving a lot of people wrong with that."

Unfortunately for him, it seems he will once again have to put an injury behind him. And if the Dodgers are going to get back to the World Series for a third consecutive year, having a healthy Kershaw will be key.

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