About two hours and 45 minutes before the first field of play on Monday night against the Pirates, Clayton Kershaw was in left field at Dodger Stadium, playing catch. When he was done, Kershaw, who had been sidelined with an infection of his left elbow since early July, raised both arms in mock exultation.
Speaking to reporters before the game, manager Dave Roberts said Kershaw could be back on the hill by next month.
“At best, it makes a couple of starts in September,” said Roberts. “So that’s the best scenario, so to speak, then we’ll see how it turns out.”
The plan for Kershaw as of now is to keep playing catch in the coming days, then see how he feels, and then move on.
“How his arm reacts to that will determine how aggressive we can be,” said Roberts. “So this is the first day of the catch game and we’ll see how he feels today and tomorrow.”
The Dodgers promoted right-handed Andre Jackson on Monday and is expected to make his major league debut as part of a bullpen game.
Jackson, number 22 in the Dodgers organization by MLB Pipeline, throws a fastball that can reach 98 mph and has a 3.28 ERA in 71.1 innings between Double-A Tulsa and Triple-A Oklahoma City.
The Dodgers also added right-handed Evan Phillips from Tampa Bay waivers earlier in the day. Phillips, who has been part of three organizations for the past four seasons, has only served three innings with the Rays this year. During his career, he has a 7.26 ERA in 57 innings.
“He’s got a good arm,” said Roberts. “It’s three plus pitches and misses bats. So I don’t know much about him, but I know our boys are really excited to have him in our club. “
After Sunday’s game in New York was switched to an East Start at 7 p.m. to accommodate ESPN’s Sunday Night Baseball, the Dodgers were forced to come home with a red eye after completing the Mets.
According to Roberts, the team landed around 4:15 p.m. and the manager came home at 5 p.m.
“But the boys seem fine,” he said. “You’re OK. It’s kind of where we are and they methodically prepare.”