Clayton Kershaw's simulated game pushed back; not a setback, per Dave Roberts

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Sunday, July 23, 2023

ARLINGTON, Texas -- The Los Angeles Dodgers are backing off on the throwing program for injured ace Clayton Kershaw, postponing a bullpen session while saying the left-hander hasn't had any setbacks with his shoulder.

Los Angeles manager Dave Roberts said Sunday there wasn't a timetable for when Kershaw would throw in the bullpen or face live hitters. Over three days, the update from Roberts changed from Kershaw throwing to hitters, to instead throwing a bullpen, to doing neither.

Kershaw threw on flat ground from the outfield before Sunday's game at Texas. The three-time NL Cy Young Award winner and 10-time All-Star hasn't pitched in a game since June 27 because of left shoulder soreness.

Roberts has said Kershaw (10-4 with an MLB-best 2.55 ERA) won't make a rehab start before returning to the active roster.

Roberts reiterated that Kershaw will throw a bullpen session before facing live hitters.

"I just don't know when that (bullpen) is going to happen," Roberts said. "I'm going to sit tight and wait for the green light from the training staff. No pain, no setback."

The 35-year-old Kershaw threw six scoreless innings at Colorado in his most recent game, which came a week after seven scoreless innings against the Angels. He was 4-0 with a 1.09 ERA in five starts in June.

The Dodgers placed Kershaw on the 15-day injured list July 3, a day after he was selected as an NL All-Star for the 10th time to match the most selections in franchise history. He attended the game in Seattle even though he wasn't able to pitch.

"I think it's smart for us to not put a hard date," Roberts said. "I don't think that's fair to Clayton or the training staff, to be quite honest."