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Clayton Kershaw takes step toward return after bullpen session

Los Angeles Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw threw a bullpen session Friday afternoon as he continues to rehab from a back issue that has sidelined him since July 23.

The signs after the session were all positive. Depending on how he responds, the left-hander is expected to throw a simulated game next, then have a rehab start or two in the minors.

The three-time Cy Young winner, in the midst of another stellar season before the injury, has said he feels healthy. He was 15-2 with a major-league-best 2.04 ERA before the injury.

Barring any setbacks, he is expected to be back around Aug. 24.

In Kershaw's absense, the Dodgers acquired right-hander Yu Darvish from the Texas Rangers on Aug. 1.

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