After today’s loss, the Dodgers find themselves three games back of the Cardinals in the chase for the second Wild Card spot. They’re also a half game behind the Brewers, which is a significant reason their playoff odds now sit below 10% and it’s edging closer to 5% with every game they don’t gain ground.
Despite that, the Dodgers are considering gambling with ace Clayton Kershaw by putting him on the mound tomorrow with a hip ailment.
Manager Don Mattingly wouldn’t say when Clayton Kershaw could pitch again, but didn’t rule out a return on Sunday for the Dodgers’ series finale against the Cincinnati Reds.
Kershaw, who missed his last start with a right hip injury, threw a 20-pitch bullpen session on Friday at Great American Ball Park.
Kershaw said he felt “great” during his mound session, but said he didn’t know if he could pitch Sunday.
Kershaw declined to talk about his hip injury.
A day before he’s potentially scheduled to go, the pitcher doesn’t know if he can do it and doesn’t want to talk about his ailment. Sounds like a good time to chance it!
That was yesterday, but earlier today the desire to throw him out there was reiterated by Don Mattingly.
Clayton Kershaw remains a possibility to pitch on Sunday in the Dodgers’ series finale against the Cincinnati Reds.
“He’s still in play,” Manager Don Mattingly said.
Noting that Dodgers management and the team medical staff will assess whether the potential rewards of starting Kershaw outweigh the risks, Mattingly said, “It’s got to be a bigger decision than just me saying OK.”
I said yesterday that the only positive to come out of Aaron Harang starting on short rest was that they weren’t considering giving Kershaw a go, but apparently that’s now out the door.
Sorry, but a 5-7% chance at the playoffs is not worth the 100% chance that next season would be screwed if something happens to Kershaw’s arm while compensating for weakness or pain in his core. It’s frustrating because their whole mantra about The Trade’s lack of immediate results was that we should judge it as a long-term thing, yet they keep pushing everybody to win this year to negative results (Matt Kemp‘s hamstring/shoulder/knee/head & Chad Billingsley‘s elbow).
Of course everybody would like to win this year, but it just strikes me as foolish to have Kershaw pitching with multiple ailments (foot is still an issue) for a marginal chance of making a playoff run.