Hanley Ramirez took ground balls, threw from the deep shortstop hole to first base, and also took an encouraging round of batting practice before Sunday’s game against the Tampa Bay Rays. It was Ramirez’s most visible sign of progress since he jammed his right shoulder last Sunday in Chicago.
After batting practice, Ramirez told reporters that he is still experiencing some discomfort in the shoulder. Today marks seven days since Ramirez suffered the injury. During that time he’s been limited to a single pinch-hitting appearance Friday, in which he struck out against Rays left-hander David Price.
Judging by the way the ball jumped off his bat and into the left and right-field bleacher seats in batting practice, Ramirez’s hitting stroke is game-ready. However, Dodgers manager Don Mattingly said it would be “a couple days at least” until Ramirez starts a game at shortstop.
The Dodgers had been hoping he would be able to throw by Friday, but that was put off until today. Dee Gordon is starting at shortstop and hitting eighth.
“We’ve missed him six days and we’re 5-1,” Mattingly said. “We’ve been able to survive it so far. If it ends up being 10 (days) it still saves us five” days if Ramirez was on the disabled list.