Brandon McCarthy headed to disabled list with shoulder problems

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Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic reports that the Diamondbacks are placing right-hander Brandon McCarthy on the disabled list due to shoulder problems. This confirms a report by Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports.

Of course, shoulder issues are nothing new for McCarthy, who gave up six runs on nine hits over 2 2/3 innings in his most recent start Thursday against the Rangers. Signed to a two-year, $15.5 million contract over the winter, the 29-year-old right-hander has a 5.00 ERA and 39/10 K/BB ratio in 66 2/3 innings through 11 starts. Only CC Sabathia and Joe Blanton have allowed more hits than McCarthy (85) so far this season.

The Diamondbacks will call up right-hander Randall Delgado to take McCarthy’s place on the roster. Acquired from the Braves in the Justin Upton deal in late January, he has an ugly 6.84 ERA and 45/30 K/BB ratio in 51 1/3 innings through 11 starts this season with Triple-A Reno. It’s possible that he’s just coming up to pitch in long relief until McCarthy’s rotation spot is needed on Tuesday. Tyler Skaggs, who was sent back down to the minors after he struck out nine in six scoreless innings in Monday’s doubleheader, is the strongest option to fill.

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.