Every spring we get an early “Believe it or not, Player X might make the team” story, with “Player X” being some veteran everyone has written off or a comeback story or a precocious rookie that everyone thinks needs more seasoning. At least as far as the veterans go, those stories rarely play out. A month and a half of spring training wears them down or reveals them to not have anything in the tank. Or maybe the writer was just too optimistic in the first place.
I kind of hope that doesn’t hold for Jason Isringhausen, who gets his obligatory “believe or not” story today. I kind of like the guy and I think the Mets would be more fun with him on them. Long odds, though, given his medical history. Gotta root for him anyway.
Oh, and if he does make the team, Jason Bay is going to give him his number 44. And he’s not going to demand the standard cash payment or Rolex or whatever. How decent.
Dodgers southpaw Clayton Kershaw is nearing his return to the mound, according to club manager Dave Roberts. Both Kershaw (left biceps tendinitis) and fellow lefty Rich Hill (left middle finger blister) are scheduled to toss simulated games on Saturday; depending on the outcome, Roberts says Kershaw could forgo a minor league assignment and slot back into the rotation by Thursday.
Kershaw, 30, was diagnosed with biceps tendinitis as the team closed out their Mexico Series at the start of the month. He has not made a start in several weeks, but was finally able to resume throwing on Sunday and managed to get through two successful bullpen sessions. Though Dodgers’ ace hasn’t been completely injury-free over his 11-year career in the majors, this is the first significant issue he’s had with his pitching arm so far. The team is expected to take every precaution with the lefty, and will likely limit him to just four innings during Saturday’s simulated game.
Prior to his injury, Kershaw was working on another dominant run with the club, sporting a 2.86 ERA, 2.0 BB/9 and 9.8 SO/9 through his first 44 innings of the season. While Kershaw, Hill and left-handed starter Hyun-Jin Ryu served their respective terms on the disabled list this month, the Dodgers utilized a combination of relievers Ross Stripling and Brock Stewart, both of whom impressed during their limited time in the rotation.