Dodgers place Joe Kelly (shoulder) on IL

August 11th, 2020

The Dodgers placed reliever on the 10-day injured list with right shoulder inflammation on Monday and recalled lefty reliever from the club’s alternate training site. Kelly’s IL stint is retroactive to Sunday.

Manager Dave Roberts said Kelly underwent an MRI, though the results weren’t available right away.

“It's been bothering him here for a few days,” Roberts said. “Give him some time on the IL to let it calm down a little bit, and hopefully, he's ready once that 10 days is up.”

Kelly last pitched Saturday, allowing one hit and striking out two while finishing off Los Angeles’ 5-4 loss to the rival Giants. He has not given up a run in seven appearances this year, combining five strikeouts with five walks and five hits allowed across 6 1/3 innings.

Kolarek also owns a perfect 0.00 ERA after four appearances this season, and he returns to the Dodgers after he was optioned to the club’s alternate site on Thursday, when Los Angeles had to reduce its active roster from 30 to 28 players.

Even if Kelly does come off the IL when his 10 days are up, he could miss even more time -- he can’t serve the length of his eight-game suspension handed down by MLB while he is on the IL.

Kelly was suspended after some notable back-and-forth exchanges with the Astros -- which included several wild pitches from the hard-throwing right-hander -- on July 28.

Kelly, according to Roberts, had his appeal hearing on Monday and is awaiting a decision.

Wood throws ‘pen
Lefty , who has been on the IL since July 28 with shoulder inflammation, was slated to throw a two-inning bullpen session on Monday, Roberts said.

Monday’s plan included 15 pitches per inning, simulating the normal up-and-down of a regular game.

If that goes well, Wood will have another throwing session on Thursday, at which time there may be a more concrete return date for the left-hander starter.

“Thursday would be the next progression, and that would be a simulated game facing some hitters,” Roberts said, adding that exercise could take place at the Dodgers’ secondary site. “I don’t know how many innings that simulated game would be, but once we get through this today, hopefully, Thursday will be more clear for us.”

Seager progressing; not in lineup
Monday marked the third consecutive game did not play in due to lower back discomfort. Roberts said the shortstop is “continuing to make progress,” but there is still no timetable for a return.

It’s still a little early for the Dodgers to explore placing Seager on the IL and filling his spot on the roster, but Roberts did acknowledge they’re in that narrow time frame of trying to decide whether it makes more sense to wait or to make a move soon.

“Fortunately, with the versatility we do have, it's not as imperative,” Roberts said. “So we're trying to net out not having Corey for four or five days, but potentially having him for four or five days, versus not having him for 10 days. We're trying to weigh that and right now, we're certainly managing, and we feel OK about it.”

Chris Taylor started at shortstop in Monday’s opener with the Padres.

Keep ‘em guessing
One of the biggest oddities of the truncated 60-game schedule is that, for logistical reasons, teams play the majority of their games within their own divisions.

As a result, there are going to be times when two teams might play each other twice within a short amount of time. For example, the Dodgers and Padres played in San Diego early last week, and here they are again, meeting at Dodger Stadium for four more games.

This can present a challenge for a pitcher, whose effectiveness can diminish the more a hitter is exposed to his pitching arsenal.

Even in regular times, when series aren’t as bunched together, pitchers are constantly playing a cat-and-mouse game with hitters, having to adjust as the season progresses. The only difference this year is that everything is happening at a faster pace.

“It’s a challenge for everybody,” reliever Dylan Floro said. “At this point, you have to stay on top of our scouting, which I think we do really well with. That’s going to be the game changer. You’re playing all these teams back to back like this; each pitch, you have to really execute. You can’t really take a pitch off.”

“You know your hand; they know what pitch mixes you have,” Roberts said. “Now, it's how you sequence it. And there's certain things that you understand, ultimately, how you want to get a hitter out. But how you get there is the fun part.”