Kershaw already has a rival scheduled for his return to the Dodgers rotation

When the Dodgers entered the 2021 season with eight potential starting pitchers, they didn’t anticipate having to rely on so many bullpen games so late in the season. But with accumulated injuries and Trevor Bauer on administrative leave, those bullpen days have become a necessity for the Dodgers as they hope to catch up with the Giants at the top of the NL West standings.

Over the next few days, the Dodgers are scheduled to get some reinforcements along the way just in time to give a final push to their ninth straight division title. Tony Gonsolin, who has been out since July 31, will be activated on Thursday and will continue his preparation for the next several weeks. It will launch every fifth or sixth day.

For his part, Clayton Kershaw is also on the way. After pitching three innings for Triple-A Oklahoma City on Tuesday, the veteran left-hander is tentatively scheduled to return to the Dodgers rotation on Monday against the diamondbacks. Kershaw will be limited to about four innings and 60 pitches, but the future Hall of Famer should have plenty of time to prepare before October.

Despite the severe injury casualties Californians have suffered throughout this season, the good news is that several of their reliever elements have been extremely effective. Mitch White and Andre Jackson deserve a lot of credit for providing stability when needed. David Price, is another who also deserves credit.

Walker Buehler and Julio Urías becoming two of the best starters in the National League has helped the Dodgers weather waves of injuries. The addition of Max Scherzer at the trade deadline has also proven to be a great move for the Dodgers.