The 2021 regular season has been one defined by injury for the Los Angeles Dodgers, which makes their second-best record in baseball all the more impressive.
As L.A. continues to trail the San Francisco Giants in the National League West standings, they have gained some clarity on who will be available for the stretch run, a potential Wild Card Game or postseason series.
Earlier this month, Garrett Cleavinger was transferred to the 60-day injured list and Dodgers manager Dave Roberts acknowledged that effectively ended his season. Cleavinger had been on the 10-day IL since Aug. 8 (retroactive to Aug. 7) because of a right oblique strain.
Meanwhile, Scott Alexander was placed on the IL on July 20 due to left shoulder inflammation, and was transferred to the 60-day IL on Sept. 7. According to Jorge Castillo of the L.A. Times, Roberts has also ruled out Alexander returning this season:
Dave Roberts said Scott Alexander won’t return this season. The reliever has been on the injured list since July 20 with shoulder inflammation.
— Jorge Castillo (@jorgecastillo) September 18, 2021
When previously asked about Alexander, Roberts hesitated on officially closing the book for this season. “I know it’s been a slow get back to health, but I know he’s still throwing,” Roberts said. “I’m not sure how aggressive and if it’s to hitters or not, but I don’t think we want to close the door quite yet on Scottie’s season.”
This marks a second time Alexander has been unable to finish a season for the Dodgers. A nerve issue in his left thumb prevented Alexander from pitching after June 5 during the 2019 season. He subsequently underwent surgery prior to the 2020 campaign.
Alexander twice suffered from inflammation in his throwing shoulder this season and thus only appeared in 18 games. He went 0-2 with a 2.93 ERA and 1.24 WHIP.
Southpaws in Dodgers bullpen
Considering how limited Alexander has been, the Dodgers have effectively operated without him as their left-handed bullpen options and therefore should be able to continue moving ahead.
David Price is back in the bullpen, Alex Vesia has taken on a high-leverage role and rookie Justin Bruihl has also contributed.
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