Kershaw has made only one start since May 1, missing a total of 39 games officially but 44 when all is said and done in two separate stints on the disabled list. The lefty missed most of May with left biceps tendonitis and all of June to this point with a lower back strain.
On the season Kershaw has a 2.76 ERA in eight starts, with 53 strikeouts and 11 walks in 49 innings. The Dodgers are 26-17 in the games not started by Kershaw since his initial injury heading into Friday’s game in New York.
The Dodgers had originally planned to send Kershaw on a rehab assignment with Triple-A Oklahoma City. But with threats of thunderstorms and rain sweeping through Omaha where OKC is playing this weekend, the Dodgers made the decision to let the lefty pitch in the majors.
Interestingly enough, they’re expecting rain in the area of Citi Field Saturday night that could have an impact on the game. It’s not even a guarantee that the weather would’ve had an impact either way, seeing as though Kershaw has always lobbied to skip rehab assignments.
When the plan for the rehab start was revealed, the plan was only for four innings anyway. It’s an easy choice to make of letting Kershaw give it a shot Saturday night instead of 21-year-old Caleb Ferguson, who has averaged less than four innings in three starts with the Dodgers this year.
Manager Dave Roberts talked more about the decision and a little on Chris Taylor, who is nursing a sore hamstring.
Kiké’s dad is back
As expected, the Dodgers activated Chase Utley ahead of Friday's opener in New York. The 39-year-old had been on the DL since May 30 with a left thumb sprain.
Utley is hitting .216/.302/.324 in 45 games this season, though he has just one hit in his last 26 at-bats and he is 7-for-59 (.119) in his last 24 games.