Here’s how bad things have gotten for Jair Jurrjens just three seasons after making the All-Star team at age 25: He’s now being passed around Triple-A by teams in need of organizational depth.
Jurrjens had been pitching at Triple-A for the Reds, but they just swapped him to the Rockies for a 24-year-old Double-A first baseman named Harold Riggins who isn’t considered a prospect.
Jurrjens hasn’t been healthy since the first half of 2012, bouncing around constantly since then while different teams have given him a chance to make a comeback. He pitched briefly in the majors for the Orioles last season, but has been at Triple-A this season with a 4.46 ERA and 27/13 K/BB ratio in 34 innings. He was equally ineffective in the minors last year, so even at age 28 his odds of returning to the big leagues are looking slim.
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.