Clayton Kershaw doesn’t expect Dodgers’ return until September

The Los Angeles Dodgers continue to piece their pitching rotation together week by week, given injuries and off-field issues. And one of their key pieces, left-hander Clayton Kershaw, said he doesn’t expect to return from his struggle with elbow inflammation until next month.

Kershaw, 33, last pitched July 3 in a 5-3 win over the Washington Nationals. He surrendered three runs on three hits in four innings but didn’t figure into the decision. On the season, he’s 9-7 with a 3.39 ERA.

He threw a three-inning, 45-pitch simulated game on July 27, but soreness prevented him from his next scheduled simulated game last Sunday.

Tried To Rush Return

“Basically, I just tried to come back too fast, which is a bummer,” Kershaw said before the Dodgers’ extra-inning loss to the Los Angeles Angels on Friday, per the Los Angeles Times. “After the sim game, it really didn’t respond well. It’s frustrating. It’s still nothing serious, but it’s something that’s going to take a little time.”

He said he wants to be on the field amid the Dodgers’ push for the National League West title and for their chance to defend their World Series championship.

Clayton Kershaw
Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

And the team could use him. Fellow Cy Young Award winner Trevor Bauer is on administrative leave as he faces allegations of sexual assault. Dustin May is out for the season after undergoing Tommy John surgery in May. Right-hander Tony Gonsolin is on the 10-day injured list due to right shoulder inflammation, and newly acquired lefty Danny Duffy is on the list with a left flexor strain.

Despite being 20 games over .500, the Dodgers enter play Saturday four games behind the San Francisco Giants in the NL West.

“It’s no fun being hurt. It’s miserable. I really don’t enjoy it at all, especially with what’s going on here,” Kershaw said. “I want to be part of the stretch run so bad, so I’m going to do everything I can do to get back, and I think I will be. But it’s definitely looking more like September than August.”

–Field Level Media (@FieldLevelMedia)