How will the Dodgers use Clayton Kershaw in October?

Clayton kershaw he wants to come back for “the fun part, but how will the Dodgers use it?”

The Dodgers are optimistic that Clayton kershaw may release critical entries for them this October. Whichever form it comes in, it’s a matter of racing against the clock and hoping for near perfection to get it back.

It’s been two months since Kershaw He entered the disabled list with a sore left elbow. Before Tuesday, he had last pitched from a mound in San Francisco shortly before the trade deadline, only to feel awkward again during a process he admitted he had rushed through. But he got on the mound this week and pitched 20 fastballs with no problem. He recovered well and pitched again on Wednesday. Another bullpen looms on Friday, this time with some mixed corners. That represents progress in what Kershaw hopes is a full return to the rotation. After Wednesday night’s game against San Diego, there are only 35 games left for the Dodgers to line up their arms for a replay of the World Series.

“As long as my elbow doesn’t hurt, we’re in a good place… It’s been frustrating. It has been a long time. It shouldn’t have taken that long, so it’s frustrating of me. But hopefully I’ll be able to be around for the fun part and help out in September and October. I want to launch. I want to help and I want to start, assuming I can get to that point and build to that point, ”he said. Kershaw at Petco Park.

The Dodgers made the biggest move of the summer to acquire Max Scherzer in part to put together a formidable October rotation. It’s a group that features a duo with six Cy Young Awards combined (Kershaw and Scherzer), a pitcher who could win the award this season (Walker Buehler) and the man on the mound last fall (Julio Urías) when the Dodgers broke their 32-year World Series Drought. Few teams can compete on paper with a quartet of Buehler, Scherzer, Kershaw and Urías, along with the options of bullpen created with an overflow of potentially healthy arms.

But Kershaw he’s been on hold for longer than he or the Dodgers expected, as the pain in his left elbow has persisted. As a result, they have remained flexible with how the three-time Cy Young winner could contribute to his return. While Kershaw said things “haven’t gotten to that point yet” as to whether he would talk about coming back in a relief role, he said he would fit into any role that takes him back to a mound. That could mean coming in relief like one arm going through a lineup once or even starting the front of a piggyback with some of the Dodgers’ other multi-inning options like Tony Gonsolin and David Price behind him.

“The only thing he and I have is respect, trust, communication, and we put it all on the table… Everything is on the table with him, he is smart enough that if it is three entries, it makes sense on paper. different. If it comes out perfect and we go to a certain point and that makes sense to start with, great… Wherever we land is where we land, ”Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said. “

Roberts said the Dodgers are willing to Kershaw make an abbreviated postseason start if necessary, recognizing that all must go well in the coming weeks to put your lifelong spindle there for a full-blown outing. “We can position him to do whatever we want … And his acceptance to play any role … Once we get to know where he is, we’ll just figure out what makes sense,” Roberts said.

If it was a different season for the Dodgers, the urgency might have been phrased differently. The Dodgers have spent several of the last several years mulling over their rotation plans and pitching in September with a view to October. Now, the Dodgers are struggling to keep up with a Giants club in the NL West that is sure to end up winning 100 games. Have a Kershaw healthy is more than just lining up a powerful rotation for the divisional series. As far as we know, it would also figure in their plans for a possible single-game wild card round.

The Dodgers have built a roster that features several future Hall of Famers, a few others who could be found on the ballot, and a wide-open window of contention for this year. This, the last season of Kershaw under contract with the Dodgers, he’s yet to come.

“With the team that we have, there aren’t many times in a career where you get that much talent on a team for one race… And who knows what next year and years after will be like. You want to take advantage of that. You want to do everything you can to be part of this, ”he said. Kershaw.

The talented core that was designed to help the Dodgers in October is in large part what could get them there despite a string of injuries that ended months this season from a former MVP in Cody Bellinger and the reigning Series MVP. World on Corey Seager. Former MVP Mookie Betts and Kershaw they have also been wasted a lot of time. At least things are starting to line up. Betts is expected to be in the lineup today. The next day, Kershaw will take his next step forward. Other reinforcements could be on the way. If all goes well, the Dodgers could be equipped with the game’s deepest lineup and a postseason rotation that most clubs would envy. The Dodgers just have to hope things turn out well. “I guess we’ll find out,” he said. Kershaw.

With information from The Athletic (Fabian Ardaya).