MLB injury notes: Matt Kemp dealing with hamstring issue, Clay Buchholz's return pushed back, and more

USA TODAY Sports

The latest in injury news from around Major League Baseball.

Kemp removed, scheduled for MRI

Things have been going pretty terribly for Matt Kemp and the Dodgers of late, and they just got a little worse. Kemp was removed from Wednesday night's game against the Angels with a strain in his right hamstring and is scheduled for an MRI sometime Thursday, reports Austin Laymance of MLB.com.

Kemp's removal came after chasing down a double from Mike Trout in the seventh inning. The two-time All-Star doesn't believe the strain is as serious as the one that sidelined him for two months last year, but we won't no for sure until the MRI results come in.

Kemp is off to the worst start of his career and is currently mired in an awful slump at the plate -- he has one hit and 10 Ks in his last 19 plate appearances -- so perhaps some time off will do him some good.

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Pagan held out for fourth straight

San Francisco Giants center fielder Angel Pagan sat out his fourth consecutive game on Wednesday, and doesn't appear to be returning to the lineup anytime soon. The fleet-footed outfielder aggravated his right hamstring while speeding around the bases on his walk-off inside-the-park home run over the weekend, and could have a DL stint in his near future if things don't turn around soon, reports Andrew Baggarly of CSN Bay Area.

Pagan received a cortisone shot (legal steroid alert!) in his leg on Wednesday in an attempt to quicken the healing process, and manager Bruce Bochy anticipates that his center fielder could return to the lineup on Friday. If he's not ready by then, a trip to the disabled list is probably in the cards.

Buchholz pushed back to Sunday

The Red Sox hoped that Clay Buchholz's aching shoulder would be better in time to start Thursday, but after feeling some discomfort during his bullpen on Wednesday, the right-hander was pushed back yet again, reports Scott Lauber of the Boston Herald.

Manager John Farrell is still hopeful that Buchholz will be able to start sometime over the weekend -- most likely on Sunday -- but it won't happen if his AC joint continues to cause him trouble. Farrell added that the Sox have yet to consider putting Buchholz on the DL, but if they do his stint could be backdated to May 23.

Left-hander Franklin Morales, who is coming back from an injury of his own, will make his season debut in Buchholz's place Thursday night. Morales has been battling a bulging disc in his lower back since the middle of February.

Kinsler's return delayed two weeks

The Texas Rangers will be without second baseman Ian Kinsler for at least two more weeks, as the injury to his ribcage is worse than the club first believed, reports Jeff Wilson of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. Originally diagnosed with a strained rib muscle, further testing revealed that Kinsler actually suffered a stress reaction -- i.e. very nearly a stress fracture.

The Rangers hoped to activate Kinsler from the DL this Sunday, but return has now been delayed to June. The recovery time for a stress reaction is between three and six weeks, so Kinsler could be sidelined into July if it doesn't heal up quickly.

Top prospect Jurickson Profar has been manning second base in Kinsler's absence, so it's not as though the Rangers are debilitated by not having Kinsler in the lineup for a few more weeks.

Pedroia at "100 percent"

Red Sox manager John Farrell was quick to quell the fears of Boston fans Wednesday when news broke of Dustin Pedroia's torn thumb ligament, stating that the second baseman is "100 percent" recovered from the injury, reports Gordon Edes of ESPN Boston.

Pedroia suffered a full tear of the UCL in his left thumb on Opening Day, and has been playing through the injury since then, but news of it did not surface until Wednesday.

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