Freddy Sanchez expected to undergo shoulder surgery

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Freddy Sanchez has been out since June 10 with a shoulder injury and the increasing likelihood that he’ll need season-ending surgery played a part in the Giants bringing in veteran middle infielders Jeff Keppinger and Orlando Cabrera via trades.

Asked yesterday about Sanchez’s odds of playing again this season, general manager Brian Sabean described the second baseman as “behind the eight-ball with each passing day” and added that “it doesn’t look good.”

Since being acquired from the Pirates in mid-2009 he’s played in just 196 of a possible 330 games due to knee and shoulder injuries, all while earning about $15 million, and Sanchez is under contract for $6 million next season thanks to an extension–the second one he agreed to since the trade–signed on April 1.

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.