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Kuroda to have oblique examined in LA

Kuroda to have oblique checked

DENVER -- Continued stiffness in a strained left oblique muscle forced the Dodgers to call timeout in Opening Day starter Hiroki Kuroda's rehabilitation.

When the team flies to San Francisco after Sunday's series finale with the Rockies, Kuroda will instead fly to Los Angeles for a Monday appointment with Dr. Neal ElAttrache.

"I don't know if I'd call it a setback," trainer Stan Conte said. "But he had increased tightness the next day [after a Thursday bullpen session] and we expected he wouldn't have anything. But that goes along with the injury to obliques. They are tough to predict."

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Kuroda has been out since feeling tightness in an April 9 bullpen session. He's now on the disabled list indefinitely, because even once he is allowed to resume throwing, he will need several bullpen sessions and a Minor League rehabilitation assignment before he can return.

"Any symptoms means he's not ready to go to the next level," Conte said. "He couldn't accomplish much in San Francisco, so we want him to see Dr. ElAttrache while he's still having tightness. He had no problem while throwing the other day, but three or four hours after it was tight, and the next day it was tight. It was better by the end of that day [after treatment]."

On Tuesday, Jason Schmidt will begin a Minor League rehab assignment at Class A Inland Empire, and manager Joe Torre said Schmidt will be joined by injured reliever Cory Wade, who will throw an inning. If that goes without further shoulder discomfort, he will probably be activated when the club returns home Thursday.

"Everything seems to be fine," Torre said of Wade. "We talked about him joining us [in San Francisco], but I don't see the sense. We've got this chance and we want to give him totally what he needs."

Torre said he wasn't sure who would close Saturday night if the situation arose, mentioning Will Ohman as a possibility.

"The last pitcher we pitch," he said, jokingly.

Torre said he didn't want to use Jonathan Broxton or Hong-Chih Kuo after their taxing outings Friday night. Ronald Belisario also pitched two innings Friday night and Torre was only lukewarm about his availability.

Ken Gurnick is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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