Matt Holliday out again with back and neck stiffness

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Cardinals left fielder Matt Holliday was scratched from the lineup for Tuesday night’s series-opener against the Angels due to stiffness in his neck and back. And he’s apparently not feeling any better.

According to’s Jenifer Langosch, Holliday is out of the Cardinals’ batting order for a second consecutive game Wednesday in Anaheim.  Allen Craig will play left field, Matt Adams will play first base, David Freese will serve as the designated hitter and Daniel Descalso will man the hot corner.

Holliday, who is being labeled day-to-day, has registered a disappointing .267/.349/.431 batting line through 327 plate appearances this season for second-place St. Louis. He finished with a .295/.379/.497 line in 2012 and a .296/.388/.525 line in 2011.


UPDATE, 9:07 p.m. ET: Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch says Holliday has a pinched nerve and is unable to rotate his head to look toward the mound. It sounds like he’ll be out a while longer.

Clayton Kershaw completes spring training with a 0.00 ERA

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Clayton Kershaw had nothing left to prove when he exited the mound during his last Cactus League start on Friday. He finished camp with a 0.00 ERA, made all the more impressive after he extended his scoreless streak to 21 1/3 innings following 6 2/3 frames of one-hit ball against the Royals.

In six spring training starts this year, the Dodgers southpaw racked up 12 hits, four walks and 23 strikeouts. His velocity appeared to fluctuate between the high-80s and low-90s from start to start, but manager Dave Roberts told reporters that he expects Kershaw to get back up to the 93 m.p.h. range next week. Kershaw is tabbed for his eighth consecutive Opening Day start on Thursday.

The 30-year-old lefty is poised to enter his 11th season with the club in 2018. He went 18-4 in 27 starts last year and turned in a 2.31 ERA, 1.5 BB/9 and 10.4 SO/9 over 175 innings. He suffered his fair share of bumps and bruises along the way, including a lower back strain that required a five-week stay on the disabled list.

The Dodgers will open their season against the Giants on Thursday, March 29 at 7:08 PM ET. Given the sudden rash of injuries that hit the Giants’ rotation earlier today, Kershaw’s Opening Day opponent has not yet been announced.