CHICAGO -- Already dealing with an injury-depleted rotation, the Dodgers now have another hurdle to clear, as left-hander Alex Wood has been shelved for at least four weeks.
Wood, who started the Dodgers' 2-0 loss to the Cubs on Monday at Wrigley Field, was placed on the 15-day disabled list with soreness in his left elbow on Tuesday. He flew to Los Angeles and underwent an MRI Wednesday that showed a posterior impingement that will require approximately four weeks of rest.
"As I understand it, the ligament is intact," manager Dave Roberts said after the Dodgers' 2-1 loss to the Cubs on Wednesday night. "So it's kind of some things that were in the past that have kind of showed themselves, and all pitchers have some, to some extent. He felt good enough to make the start [on Monday] and felt pretty good going into it, but afterward, obviously, it inflamed. ... The ligament is intact, and that's a blessing right there."
Wood will be re-evaluated after the rest period. Once he is cleared to resume baseball activities, he will likely go through a throwing program and rehab stint. Rookie phenom Julio Urias, recalled from Triple-A Oklahoma City on Tuesday, will start on Thursday in the finale against the Cubs but isn't guaranteed to take Wood's spot in the rotation.
"I'm very happy about the opportunity, to be able to take advantage of the opportunity and to be able to pitch well," Urias said through an interpreter. "It's another opportunity for me to be up here. I am going to fight and do everything I can to be able to prove I need to remain here."
Urias lasted just 2 2/3 innings in his Major League debut, on May 27 against the Mets, allowing three runs, but Roberts is confident he will tap into his potential.
"I thought he handled himself really well [in his debut], into following that up [against] arguably the best team in baseball," Roberts said. "We're checking some boxes early for Julio."
If Urias doesn't stick in the rotation, the Dodgers will need to find another option to patch the hole left by Wood's absence. Left-hander Hyun-Jin Ryu (shoulder surgery) and right-hander Brandon McCarthy (Tommy John surgery) are working through their recoveries and are expected to pitch for the Dodgers at some point this season.
"It's tough to see a teammate go down, especially [Wood]," said Mike Bolsinger, who took the loss on Wednesday after allowing two runs in five innings. "He's a pretty good friend of mine, and I hope he gets well soon. You just have to go out there and keep pitching, fill that rotation spot, and hopefully I can go out there every five games and basically just keep the team in the ballgame."
Brian Hedger is a contributor to MLB.com based in Chicago. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.