In the midst of a week that saw numerous Dodgers players go down with injury, Los Angeles will get a boost from the return of 2013 NL Cy Young winner Clayton Kershaw on Tuesday.
Kershaw hasn't pitched since the club's opening game against the Diamondbacks in Australia in late March due to a strained muscle in his upper back. The 26-year-old struck out seven Arizona batters and allowed just one earned run over 6⅔ innings in his only start and is coming off a season in which he finished with a 1.83 ERA and struck out 232 batters in 236 innings.
After making two rehab starts in the minors, the left-hander will face the Washington Nationals Tuesday.
The Dodgers' pitching staff has done well without their best starter, with their rotation posting a 3.04 ERA entering Monday thanks to strong early-season performances from Zack Greinke and Dan Haren. Adding Kershaw to the mix should only aid the club's strong run prevention thus far in 2014 and help soften the blow of seeing Hyun-Jin Ryu head to the DL.
Ryu receives good news on shoulder
Although the Dodgers were forced to place Ryu on the 15-day DL, the 27-year-old did receive good news after visiting a doctor in LA on Monday, according to Steve Dilbeck of the Los Angeles Times.
Ryu has no structural damage in his inflamed shoulder and will begin a throwing program as he tries to work his way back to full health.
The Korean native has compiled a 3.00 ERA in 39 innings so far this season, striking out 31 batters and walking 11. Ryu is eligible to come off the disabled list on May 13 and shouldn't miss too much time for the Dodgers.
Puig day-to-day after passing concussion test
It appears Yasiel Puig is just fine after crashing into the right field wall against the Marlins on Sunday.
The 23-year-old came away banged up from the collision, and the Dodgers feared he might have suffered a concussion. Puig passed his concussion tests, however, and is listed as day-to-day, which is great news for the Dodgers and their star outfielder.
Through 28 games this season, Puig has batted .309/.397/.500 with four home runs and 11 extra-base hits. The Cuban native has hardly missed a beat after an impressive rookie campaign, and despite some bumps and bruises from the collision, he should be back in the Dodgers' lineup in the next day or two.