Over the weekend, as Alex Wood prepared to make his start in Monday’s 6-5 Dodgers victory over the Pittsburgh Pirates, he skipped his bullpen session. For the last two weeks, he has been dealing with inflammation in the SC joint in his left shoulder, which resurfaced during his outing Monday. The condition could land him back on the disabled list.
Wood and manager Dave Roberts said that the left-hander would be evaluated Tuesday. In the aftermath of a grueling, 12-inning game that lasted 4 hours 35 minutes, Wood’s condition was the most pressing issue.
“We’ll have a conversation going forward to see what the best course of action is,” Wood said after Yasiel Puig ended the scoring with a 12th-inning solo home run.
Wood gave up three runs, all on solo homers, in six innings. He struck out five, but his fastball velocity sagged slightly. Wood suggested that the decreased life on his fastball resulted from misaligned mechanics. He has not been able to complete his usual between-start work because of stiffness in the joint, which connects the sternum and the clavicle.
Wood spent time on the disabled list in May and June because of the injury. He felt a recurrence after his Aug. 9 outing at Arizona. He attributed it to a heavy load of mechanical tweaks he undertook leading up to that game.
“We’ll make a decision once the medical staff puts an eye on him,” Roberts said.
Wood finished Monday with a quality start. The game was only halfway over. After being quieted by Pirates starter Gerrit Cole for six innings, the Dodgers erupted in the seventh. A grand slam by Curtis Granderson capped a five-run flurry.
An inning later, a rotten outing from Pedro Baez allowed the lead to fritter away. Baez, along with left-handed reliever Tony Watson, combined to give it up. Watson plunked the first batter he faced. Baez arrived one batter later, and allowed an RBI double, issued three walks and gave up a score-tying groundout.
Four innings later, Puig crushed a hanging slider from Pirates reliever Dovydas Neverauskas. It was his 22nd home run, and one that prevented the game from extending any further.
“I keep doing my job, and keep getting ready every day,” Puig said. “And thank God, because of that preparation, I’ve been able to do some good things.”
Bellinger continues to rest sprained ankle
Cody Bellinger’s sprained right ankle remained swollen Monday, two days after the Dodgers rookie injured it while making a leaping catch at the outfield wall at Detroit.
Bellinger sat out Monday for the second game in a row, and manager Dave Roberts indicated that Bellinger also would sit out Tuesday.
“That’s as far as I want to get ahead, right now,” Roberts said.
The Dodgers will continue to evaluate the severity of the injury as the week continues. Bellinger did not require an MRI immediately after the injury, Roberts said. But the ankle is still not capable of supporting Bellinger, given the violence of his approach at the plate.
“With the torque that he creates with his swing, and the instability [created] by swelling with a sprain, it doesn’t make sense right now,” Roberts said.
The Dodgers have not publicly raised the possibility of placing Bellinger on the 10-day disabled list. But if the swelling keeps Bellinger on the bench heading into the weekend, the team could reevaluate.
Darvish hopeful for Sunday
Yu Darvish, who has experienced tightness in his lower back, completed a 38-pitch bullpen session before Monday’s game. The Dodgers plan to activate him from the 10-day disabled list for Sunday’s game against the Milwaukee Brewers.
Pitching coach Rick Honeycutt monitored the session. Darvish will throw again Thursday.
“It was good to see him get through this,” Honeycutt said. “We’ll make sure there were no repercussions after this afternoon and do another one with a few more pitches. There was good intensity and good effort today, so that was a very positive sign.”
Darvish left his Dodger Stadium debut last week after reporting an issue with his back. He has said that he feels sound enough to pitch, but the team wants to be careful. Brock Stewart is expected to start in Darvish’s place Tuesday against the Pittsburgh Pirates.