Mattingly on Wilson being placed on disabled list

SAN DIEGO -- Four games into the season, setup reliever Brian Wilson is headed for the disabled list with nerve irritation in a right elbow that has already had two Tommy John reconstruction operations.

Manager Don Mattingly revealed the injury after Tuesday's 3-2 win over the Padres, adding he was relieved to hear that an MRI taken Monday did not reveal anything worse. Wilson will officially be placed on the DL on Wednesday, at which time a corresponding move will be made to replace him.

"We feel he'll be OK," said Mattingly. "It's not as good as it could be. The plan is to get him back once this calms down."

On the other hand, Mattingly could not offer a timetable for Wilson's return, only hours after it turned out that Clayton Kershaw will be sidelined for at least a month -- longer than the club originally indicated.

Mattingly noted that Wilson "felt something in the 'pen" warming up before he entered Sunday night's game, "but he still came out there."

Mattingly said Wilson went to Los Angeles for an MRI and exam by Dr. Neal ElAttrache on Monday after giving up three runs without retiring a batter on Sunday. Mattingly said Wilson reported the discomfort after the game.

Wilson was in the clubhouse before Tuesday's game, but he did not appear on the field or in the bullpen. Chris Perez is likely to pick up the eighth-inning role, depending on matchups.

Wilson's health has been a cause of concern since a Spring Training game on March 10, when he threw a pitch that alarmed pitching coach Rick Honeycutt, resulting in a mound visit by Mattingly.

Wilson remained in that game, but he allowed two runs on two hits and was removed after two-thirds of an inning when he reached a 15-pitch limit. After the game, Mattingly said Wilson was fine.

But Wilson did not appear in another game until March 15, the day before the club left for Australia, where on March 22 Wilson pitched a perfect inning with two strikeouts against Arizona. He has not pitched in back-to-back games this season.

Wilson, who returned from his second Tommy John surgery last year, was lights-out in 13 1/3 innings for the Dodgers down the stretch in 2013 before parlaying that success into a $10 million salary to set up 26-year-old closer Kenley Jansen.

Muscle strain to sideline Kershaw at least a month

Kershaw out longer than expected with muscle strain

SAN DIEGO -- Injured Dodgers starter Clayton Kershaw is likely to be sidelined for a month or longer, the club revealed Tuesday.

"After consultation with Dr. Neal ElAttrache and a review of the MRI scan, Kershaw will be placed on a rehab that includes a submaximal throwing program for the next two to three weeks," the team said in a release.

"He will then be reevaluated by ElAttrache to determine when he can start throwing at increased velocity. The timetable on when he might return to Major League competition will be determined when he is reevaluated in two to three weeks."

Kershaw was placed on the disabled list Saturday, retroactive to March 23, with a strained Teres Major muscle strain near his left armpit, with which he apparently pitched in the Australian season opener.

Kershaw was eligible to return April 8, but manager Don Mattingly said he believed the two-time Cy Young Award winner would be out longer than that and will probably need a Minor League rehab assignment.

"We'll let him throw his way back," Mattingly said. "He's gotten far enough away that he'll need a progression [to return]. This is going to take some time."

Kershaw's absence from the rotation means Hyun-Jin Ryu is the likely starter in Friday's home opener against the Giants, with Paul Maholm expected to start Saturday and Zack Greinke on Sunday.

Injured starter Josh Beckett, who threw a 48-pitch simulated game on Monday, could be activated soon, Mattingly said, even though he is not built up for a 100-pitch start.

"If we need him, it would be a shorter outing," Mattingly said of Beckett.

Kemp on track to be activated Friday

Mattingly optimistic Kemp will soon return to team

SAN DIEGO -- Outfielder Matt Kemp is eligible to be activated Friday, and Dodgers manager Don Mattingly said it will probably happen.

"He's at a point where he's got to see Major League pitching to see where he's at," Mattingly said of Kemp, who has been rehabbing from left ankle and shoulder operations. "He needs that intensity, and to get over the anxiety of playing in front of people. It will be an adjustment for Matt."

It will also be an adjustment for Mattingly and the lineup, because Kemp hasn't had a normal Spring Training and will likely need time to shake off the rust. Mattingly said it's not something that a Minor League rehab assignment can solve.

"I don't know what that does for him at this point," he said. "He's had as many at-bats in Arizona as anybody. At some point, he's got to start.

"Physically, in his mind, Matt feels he's ready. He's said he's not afraid to do all the things he has to do. In a sense, we can only trust him. He's been honest with us. He doesn't want to get embarrassed. He wants to do well."

Eventually, Mattingly will be challenged to fit four outfielders into three spots, but he said initially Kemp will be handled like any player coming out of Spring Training.

"We definitely have to be patient with him," he said. "He's not going to play in 10 straight games."