Los Angeles Dodgers' Clayton Kershaw to start vs. New York Mets on Thursday

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Wednesday, August 31, 2022

NEW YORK -- Los Angeles Dodgers lefty Clayton Kershaw is set to come off the injured list and rejoin the rotation Thursday to face the New York Mets.

Kershaw hasn't pitched since Aug. 4, when he exited a start againstSan Franciscobecause of lower back pain. The 34-year-old three-time NL Cy Young Award winner spent five weeks on the IL with a back injury earlier this season.

Kershaw felt good following a bullpen session Monday is ready to return in a game at Citi Field between NL division leaders.

Manager Dave Roberts said inserting Kershaw into the rotation Thursday will allow the Dodgers to give Dustin May an extra day of rest before his third start following Tommy John surgery. May, who underwent the procedure in May 2021, is 1-1 with a 1.64 ERA and 13 strikeouts in 11 innings.

Kershaw is 7-3 with a 2.64 ERA in 15 starts. He tossed seven perfect innings before being pulled against the Minnesota Twins in his season debut April 13 and carried a perfect game into the eighth inning against the Los Angeles Angels on July 15.

Roberts said the Dodgers, who had hoped to go to a six-man rotation before Tony Gonsolin went on the IL on Monday with a right forearm strain, would stick with a five-man rotation for now.

"But it wouldn't surprise me if we reinstated someone at some point to give guys an extra day," Roberts said.

The Dodgers (90-38) have the best record in the majors.