Kazmir slated to have exam on Tuesday

Dodgers left-hander dealing with sore neck, back

Kazmir slated to have exam on Tuesday

CINCINNATI -- Coming into Monday's game against the Reds, four of the Dodgers' last eight starters had gone fewer than four innings.

After giving up four runs on six hits in 2 2/3 innings in an 18-9 win, Scott Kazmir made it five out of nine.

"Scott is fighting some physical things with his body," Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said. "He's doing what he can, but when your body doesn't feel right, mechanically, it affects mechanics. He knows he wants to go out there and go deeper in a game. When you've got a 6-1 lead, he wants the decision, for himself, for the team. When you're physically limited and you can't execute, he's frustrated."

Kazmir is dealing with some stiffness in his neck and his back, something he said that he's been dealing with "for years." The problem with his neck in particular has messed with Kazmir's mechanics, not allowing him to get his head toward the catcher properly and resulting in him flying open.

While the problem was described by Kazmir as "fatigue," he's going to have an exam on Tuesday in Los Angeles.

"No matter what happens, we've gotten this far," Kazmir said. "I know how my body works. If we have some type of imaging, whatever happens, I'll strengthen it up and I'll continue to do what I do."

Neither Kazmir nor Roberts seemed to believe that Kazmir could be forced to miss a start due to the injury, which is good news for a beleaguered pitching corps that could end up putting Brett Anderson on the DL and bringing Ross Stripling back to pitch out of the bullpen. If Anderson goes on the DL, it would be the seventh Dodgers' starter on the DL, excluding Rich Hill, who will be activated prior to his start Wednesday.

"Right now, we're not thinking about the DL," Roberts said. "But that is a decision, if he's not going to be 100 percent. We have to think about what's best for the ballclub right now, so we'll make that decision in the days coming."

Roberts also revealed that Norris was dealing with a little bit of a tight back. Norris pitched out of the bullpen as one of six relievers used Monday. However, that will not affect his eligibility to potentially take Anderson's turn on Thursday, because Monday was Norris' scheduled throw day between starts. The back, which brought trainers to the mound during Monday's outing, shouldn't keep Norris out either.

"After a couple throws, I saw a little wincing and it didn't seem right," Roberts said. "I didn't see the warmups, and when I saw him get out there, something just didn't look right. So his back was tight. I would think that he'd be fine and I didn't want to extend him anymore."

Cody Pace is a reporter for MLB.com based in Cincinnati and covered the Dodgers on Monday. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.