This could end up being disastrous news for the Los Angeles Dodgers.
According to manager Dave Roberts, it’s more possible now than ever before that staff ace Clayton Kershaw could undergo surgery to repair a herniated disc in his back.
Dave Roberts said Kershaw's setback makes surgery seem like more of a possibility now. But he has not been told that in reports.
— Bill Plunkett (@billplunkettocr) July 20, 2016
The three-time Cy Young winner was placed on the 15-day disabled list late last month. He did put up 60 pitches in a simulated game over the weekend, but apparently things didn’t go according to plan.
On Tuesday, the Dodgers announced Kershaw would be shut down until the pain in his back goes away.
Though, it is important to note that Roberts made these comments without being told that surgery is a possibility by the Dodgers medical team.
Entering Wednesday’s action the Dodgers were in first place in the National League wild card race and 4.5 games behind the San Francisco Giants in the NL West.
Kershaw’s importance to the team cannot be overstated. After all, the squad boasts a .500 record when he doesn’t take to the hill this season. For comparison’s sake, Los Angeles is 14-2 in games that Kershaw has started.
The league’s best pitcher has posted an 11-2 record with a 1.79 ERA and 0.73 WHIP in 16 starts this season. He’s also put up 145 strikeouts compared to nine walks in 121 innings.
Needless to say, missing him for an extended period of time would put the Dodgers playoff chances in immediate danger.
It’s also in this that the Dodgers have reportedly started hunting for big-name players on the trade market. Depending on what happens regarding Kershaw, the team might find itself having to make a move between now and the August 1st non-waiver deadline.