Sunday, October 28, 2012

Injury updates on Kemp, Jansen, and Crawford

As the hated Giants march towards their second World Series championship in three years, here's a look at three of the Dodgers' big guns and their progress on injuries.

Matt Kemp - Remember when Kemp ran into the outfield wall in Coors Field on August 27?  It's hard to forget if you saw it, and for Kemp, it turned out to cause the unraveling of his season.

His shoulder has slowly gone from bad to worse, so when he went under the knife on October 5, he was told that rehab will be longer than he anticipated.  All he can really do now is cardio work, as he won't be allowed to even swing a bat until January.  From there, it's all about not rushing back too fast, even if it looks like he will be able to start Spring Training on time.  Adrian Gonzalez and Hanley Ramirez have gone through a similar procedure, so there's a couple guys he can rely upon for advice.  Let's hope he listens to it and doesn't come back at half speed.

Kenley Jansen - The news is better for Jansen, who was finally unable to have surgery for is irregular heartbeat on October 23.  What's even better is that his recovery time is only 7-10 days, after which he's back to training like usual without restriction.  That's some great news.

Anything involving the heart is scary enough, so we can only hope this isn't something that keeps popping up for him.  The blood thinner medication that he was on during his time off caused him to not even be able to sit in the dugout for fear of getting hit by a ball.  If the Dodgers resign Brandon League, who filled in very well in the closer's role when called upon, then the trio of Jansen, League, and Ronald Belisario will be one of baseball's best in 2013.

Carl Crawford - In a bit of an odd sight, Crawford met with the media on Friday... despite the fact he was acquired two months ago.  But since he's been shelved with Tommy John surgery, he hasn't actually said a word to anyone, so I guess now's the time.

The two months also represents the amount of time he's been healing since elbow reconstruction, which is good news for Dodger fans.  The early timetable is that he may indeed be ready for Opening Day.  Keep in mind that TJ surgery requires much more downtime for pitchers, with obviously more strain they put on their arms.  Crawford pretty much has a noodle arm even at 100%, so don't expect Vlad Guerrero out there.

Crawford feels like he's ahead of schedule, so take that for what it's worth.  Like Kemp, the key is simply to be patient in an impatient world.  Like the Giants are showing right now, it's about peeking late in the year, not early.  If the Dodgers can keep their main guns grounded until they are completely ready, that will benefit everyone.

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