Cubs reliever Pedro Strop was removed from an appearance Tuesday night against the White Sox with discomfort in his groin and an MRI taken on Wednesday revealed a moderate left groin strain.
Strop has been placed on the 15-day disabled list and could miss as much as four weeks. The Cubs recalled left-hander Zac Rosscup in a corresponding move Wednesday to provide needed bullpen depth.
Strop seemed poised to work his way into the Cubs’ closer mix this season, but he has registered an ugly 4.97 ERA, 1.50 WHIP, and 15/8 K/BB ratio through 15 appearances.
The 28-year-old had a 2.83 ERA, 0.94 WHIP, and 42/11 K/BB ratio in 35 innings for Chicago last season.
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.