Dodgers P Yoshinobu Yamamoto out for 'some time' with strained rotator cuff suffered months after signing $325M contract

The Los Angeles Dodgers placed prized rookie pitcher Yoshinobu Yamamoto on the 15-day injured list Sunday then announced that he has a strained rotator cuff that will sideline him indefinitely.

Dodgers manager Dave Roberts announced the diagnosis after a 3-0 win over the Kansas City Royals. Los Angeles had placed him on the 15-day injured list prior to the game. Per Roberts, the injury isn't season-ending, but will require Yamamoto to miss "some time."

The Dodgers didn't offer a precise timeline for his return. Los Angeles also lost All-Star infielder Mookie Betts to a fractured wrist when he was hit by a pitch in Sunday's game. His timeline to return is also unclear.

Yamamoto left Saturday's game after pitching two innings in Kansas City's 7-2 win over the Dodgers. He informed the staff of triceps tightness after the second inning, prompting the decision to remove him from the game.

Yoshinobu Yamamoto is slated to undergo further testing after leaving Saturday's game after two innings. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)
Yoshinobu Yamamoto is slated to undergo further testing after leaving Saturday's game. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

Yamamoto threw 100 pitches or more in each of his previous four starts. He was initially slated to face the Texas Rangers on Thursday before having his start pushed to Saturday for rest. He left Saturday's game after 28 pitches. He allowed one hit, one walk and no runs to the Royals.

One of the most decorated pitchers in Japanese baseball history, Yamamoto posted a 1.82 ERA over seven seasons in Nippon Professional Baseball. He joined the Dodgers in the offseason at 25 years old on a 12-year, $325 million contract, the largest for a pitcher in MLB history.

Yamamoto has excelled through 14 MLB starts with the Dodgers. In 74 innings pitched, Yamamoto has a 2.92 ERA and 1.068 WHIP with 84 strikeouts and 17 walks. The 43-29 Dodgers entered Sunday with a seven-game lead over the second-place San Diego Padres in the NL West.

Per MLB, right-handed Dodgers starter Bobby Miller is slated to come off the injured list and pitch against the Colorado Rockies on Wednesday. Clayton Kershaw, meanwhile, is slated to start a rehab assignment with Single-A Rancho Cucamonga in his return from offseason shoulder surgery that's sidelined him all season.