Minor leaguer throws a perfect game

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Justin Germano of my hometown Columbus Clippers threw a perfect game last night.  The victims: the Syracuse Chiefs.

He struck out seven in what was the first perfect game in Columbus Clippers history and only the fifth in the history of the International League. Which kind of makes sense when you realize that guys are in the International League because either (a) they’re prospects that the big club doesn’t really want to see throwing complete games and the number of pitches those entail; or (b) they aren’t fabulous pitchers and have a hard time getting guys out.

Germano is closer to the latter than the former. At 28, he’s had a pretty undistinguished run in parts of six seasons in the big leagues. Before last night he wasn’t even doing all that hot at AAA.

But now he has an accomplishment that he’ll remember for the rest of his life.

Clayton Kershaw might return to the Dodgers’ rotation next week

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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.