Kershaw Optioned to Jacksonville

The Los Angeles optioned left-handed pitcher Clayton Kershaw to Jacksonville and reinstated right-handed pitcher Hiroki Kuroda from the 15-day disabled list. General Manager Ned Colletti made the announcement.

The move came as a surprise to many and no one was more surprised that Kershaw himself.

Joe Torre stressed, both to Clayton and to the media, that the move was more about needing a roster spot for Hiroki Kuroda, who is coming off the DL and starting tonight, than it was about the way Clayton has pitched.

But Clayton, who wasn't born yesterday, although in baseball-time he's close, summed it up this way, "Any way you spin it, I'm getting sent down. They can say they didn't have enough room, but they brought me up when they didn't have enough room, because all those pitchers were healthy then."

And as an example of how life turns on very small happenings, had Kershaw extracted himself from the sixth inning cleanly, or Brian Falkenborg had retired the one man needed to end the inning instead of throwing a three-run home run, would Kershaw have been sent down after working six innings and allowing only one run?

Perception, perception, perception.

Kuroda started last night's game (Wednesday) against the Astros at Minute Maid Park. 

  Kershaw went 0-2 with a 4.42 ERA in eight starts after having his contract purchased from Double-A Jacksonville.  In his big league debut May 25 vs. St. Louis, the 20-year-old allowed just two runs and five hits in 6.0 innings.  He last pitched yesterday at Houston, picking up a no-decision in the Dodgers' 7-6 extra-innings win after tossing 5.2 innings of three-run ball.  

Kuroda, 33, was placed on the 15-day disabled list June 19, retroactive to June 13, with right shoulder tendinitis.  He last appeared June 12 at San Diego, giving up six runs on five hits and four walks in 2.1 innings.  In his previous start, June 6 vs. the Chicago Cubs, he tossed a four-hit shutout.  

Kuroda, who signed with the Dodgers as a free agent in December 2007, is 3-6 with a 4.04 ERA in 14 starts overall.