Clayton Kershaw out indefinitely

LOS ANGELES -- The Los Angeles Dodgers scratched Cy Young winner Clayton Kershaw from Sunday's scheduled start against the St. Louis Cardinals and announced the left-hander is out indefinitely. The 24-year-old has been dealing with inflammation in his right hip.

Kershaw has an appointment with a hip specialist in New York on Tuesday and will join the Dodgers in Washington after that. Manager Don Mattingly said he has no idea when -- or even if -- Kershaw will pitch again this season.

"Right now, you don't have time to brace yourself and it's not a good thought," Mattingly said. "You don't want to think about having to go through it without Kersh. You know you kind of just count on him saving your 'pen. You know he's going to go seven-plus, you're going to be in the game and you've got a pretty good chance of winning.

"Other than all those factors, you just kind of move on and you've got to get it done."

The Dodgers trail the Cardinals by one game for a wild-card spot entering Saturday night's game.

The Dodgers already have lost No. 2 starter Chad Billingsley to a season-ending elbow injury. Left-hander Ted Lilly is also out for the season with a shoulder injury.

Now, they're left with a rotation led by Josh Beckett, who is 6-13 with a 4.94 ERA, along with Aaron Harang, Chris Capuano and Joe Blanton.

Stephen Fife will take Kershaw's turn in the rotation for now, but Mattingly said there's a chance the team will take advantage of open dates to go with a four-man rotation as often as possible for the final 17 games.

Kershaw declined to speak with reporters Saturday. Mattingly said Kershaw tried to test the injury by going through his delivery without a ball Saturday, but was in too much pain to go further. When Mattingly scratched Kershaw from a start in San Francisco last Sunday, Kershaw admitted he was irritated with the manager.

"There was no fight as far as him wanting to pitch this time," Mattingly said. "He knows he can't pitch with this."

Kershaw leads the National League with 206 2/3 innings. He is 12-9 with a 2.70 ERA.