Clayton Kershaw is headed to the DL because of his sore back

Los Angeles Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw is headed to the disabled list.

Kershaw was sent back to LA to have his back examined after experiencing discomfort in his Sunday start at Pittsburgh. He was uncharacteristically ineffective in that outing, allowing four earned runs on nine hits and two walks in six innings. He had allowed only five earned runs over his previous four starts and had walked only seven batters all season.

He had been scheduled to start Friday, and his availability for the All-Star Game also is in doubt.

In the midst of another outstanding season, the three-time NL Cy Young Award winner is 11-2 with an MLB-best 1.79 ERA. Kershaw has struck out 145 batters in 121 innings, while walking just nine.