In the third inning, Dodgers outfielder Yasiel Puig led off with a ground ball up the middle. Shortstop Brandon Crawford snagged the ball and fired to first but couldn’t beat Puig, who dove head-first in an attempt to beat the play. Puig reached successfully but was ultimately picked off.
After the dive, Puig consulted with trainer Stan Conte but remained in the game until its completion. After the game, however, Puig had an X-ray on his thumb and manager Don Mattingly said his star player was “a little sore”, according to Eric Stephen of SB Nation’s True Blue L.A. However, results haven’t been released yet, which will determine the extent of the injury. In Stephen’s account, Puig’s thumb wasn’t taped, nor was it in a splint, suggesting the injury could be minor, but the team should release more details later on Saturday night or early on Sunday.
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.