Los Angeles Dodgers, MLB Postseason

Clayton Kershaw won’t start Game 3, but Dodgers optimistic he’ll pitch in NLCS

Clayton Kershaw was scratched from starting Game 2 of the NLCS with back spasms, but the Dodgers are optimistic he’ll be back on the mount at some point vs. the Atlanta Braves.

The Los Angeles Dodgers may have sent fans into a bit of a panic Tuesday afternoon when the team announced Clayton Kershaw was scratched from his Game 2 start. Tony Gonsolin is now starting Tuesday night, which is a fine consolation in place of Kershaw.

Now the focus turns to if and when Kershaw can return. Manager Dave Roberts sheds a bit of light on that when speaking to the media ahead of Game 2.

Clayton Kershaw will not start Game 3

The southpaw is dealing with back spasms in a series where there are no days off. There is also the real possibility the Dodgers fall behind 2-0 and can’t get Kershaw back until a potential elimination game in Game 4. That may be too much of a doomsday scenario after the team’s first postseason loss in 2020, but it is still possible if the offense doesn’t wake up.

Kershaw has made two starts this postseason and combined for a total of 13 innings with three earned runs and 19 strikeouts. He does have a history of falling apart at times in the postseason, however, that does not change the fact he is still a dominant starting pitcher.

The bullpen may be where Kershaw stays during the NLCS if he is good enough to pitch for short periods of time. It all depends on how his back feels on a daily basis. He was able to get in some dry work on Tuesday.

Being down 1-0 in the series is no cause for panic. The same goes for losing Kershaw if he will be able to return soon.

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Gonsolin just needs to step up and, once again, the offense has to score more than one run if the Dodgers are going to win many games this series.

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