Your ‘Carmaggedon’ Dodger Stadium survival guide.

Due to the closure of the 405 Freeway this weekend, the Dodgers will be opening auto gates early on Saturday and Sunday. Auto gates will be opened at 1:30 p.m. on Saturday for the 6:10 game and 10:30 a.m. on Sunday for the 1:10 start.

One alternative: The Dodger Stadium Express picks up fans at Union Station and continues to Dodger Stadium with service starting 90 minutes prior to the beginning of the games and concludes 45 minutes after the end of games. Shuttles make the trip to Dodger Stadium from Union Station every 10 minutes prior to the start of the game and run approximately every 30 minutes throughout the game.

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John Ely, Joc Pederson win Branch Rickey Awards.

The Dodgers chose right-handed pitcher John Ely and outfielder Joc Pederson as the Branch Rickey Minor League Pitcher and Player of the Year, respectively.

They join a list of past winners that includes Pedro Martinez, Eric Karros, Mike Piazza, Paul Konerko, Chin-lung Hu, Joe Thurston and Billy Ashley.

“It was a good season,” said Ely, who learned he won the award two days ago. “The accolades and all, they’re great. I’m just honestly happy to have put together the year that I did. The awards aside…this is where I want to be. That’s what I’m happy about, that (my season at Triple-A) was able to get me here.”

Both Ely and Pederson will be honored in an on-field pregame ceremony prior to tomorrow’s 7:10 p.m. Dodger game against the Colorado Rockies.

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Billingsley: No setbacks in throwing program.

Chad Billingsley continues to make progress from a partially torn ulnar collateral ligament in his right (throwing) elbow.

The pitcher said Wednesday that he continues to throw from flat ground on back-to-back days, followed by one day of rest. He’s now able to make “about 35” throws from up to 60 feet, and is on track to throw off a mound in “a couple weeks.”

It was initially feared that Billingsley might have to undergo Tommy John surgery,which would force him to miss all of the 2013 season. But as long as he continues to throw without pain, that seems less and less likely.

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Why the Dodgers radically altered their lineup.

The Dodgers’ lineup got a last-minute makeover Wednesday, giving it an unfamiliar look for today’s game against the Padres:

Herrera LF
Punto 2B
Kemp CF
Gonzalez 1B
Ramirez SS
Cruz 3B
Rivera RF
Treanor C
Harang P

Two of the changes were brought on by injury. Shane Victorino was originally leading off, but his injured left wrist is preventing him from batting right-handed — the side he needs to bat from against Padres left-hander Clayton Richard. Second baseman Mark Ellis is ill and undergoing IV treatment today, manager Don Mattingly said.

The other changes weren’t. A.J. Ellis isn’t catching a day game after a night game, as usual. Andre Ethier is 4 for 28 with a double and four RBIs in his career against Richard, and .215/.270/.321 against all lefties this season, so he’s out in favor of Rivera (who’s 0 for 8 lifetime against Richard.
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