Chris Capuano‘s first — and likely last — rehabilitation start is over.
The left-hander allowed two runs in 5 ⅓ innings for the Albuquerque Isotopes on Wednesday, walking one and striking out four. Capuano also grounded out to the shorstop and pitcher and had no apparent issues with his strained left calf.
Capuano hadn’t experienced any pain in his calf recently, though he had to miss three starts after aggravating the injury on April 16.
His next start could come Tuesday against the Arizona Diamondbacks at Dodger Stadium, or on Monday if Dodgers manager Don Mattingly chooses to give Josh Beckett an extra day of rest.
Capuano is 0-1 with a 9.61 earned-run average (five runs in 4 ⅔ innings) with the Dodgers this season.
Chris Capuano continued to throw Monday at Dodger Stadium and is expected to start for the Albuquerque Isotopes on Wednesday. It’s the only rehab start Capuano is expected to make before he is activated from the disabled list. The left-hander strained his left calf covering first base on April 16.
Zack Greinke threw off flat ground from approximately 90-100 feet Monday as he continued his rehab from a fractured left clavicle. The right-hander said he’s still “just a little bit” sore 16 days after undergoing surgery to have a stabilizing metal plate inserted in the area of the clavicle: “I’m a little achy here and there.”
Greinke hasn’t swung a bat yet, saying “it’s not worth the risk,” and even cracked a joke about his swing. “It was already bad.”
Second baseman Mark Ellis is no closer to playing in a game, or being placed on the disabled list, since straining his right quadriceps on Friday. Ellis jogged a little bit Monday, said Dodgers manager Don Mattingly, who’s willing to play short-handed for now.
“We’ve played short before,” Mattingly said. “You can do it. Sometimes you may get 10 games. We just need to be creative and be careful with players early in the game. You can’t burn guys.”
Reinstating Hanley Ramirez from the 15-day disabled list Monday gave the Dodgers an extra infielder off the bench for Monday night’s game against the Colorado Rockies.
With Ellis, Mattingly said, “it’s more of a medical decision than a baseball decision right now.”
Matt Guerrier allowed two home runs in relief of Matt Magill on Saturday night, further depleting a short-handed Dodgers bullpen. (Associated Press photo)
For all the money the Dodgers have spent building their 2013 roster — about $230 million when the regular season began — they didn’t have a single pitcher available if last night’s game against the Milwaukee Brewers had gone to the 12th inning.
That’s not exactly unusual. If taxed enough, any bullpen will run out of arms. The Dodgers didn’t even get to the 10th inning yesterday, but manager Don Mattingly had to line up his possibilities when the Dodgers had runners on second and third base with two outs in the ninth inning.
“I’ve got to bring Josh (Wall) back out” for the 10th inning, Mattingly said. “I’ve got one (inning) with Kenley (Jansen). Then it’s Schu.”
Chad Billingsley will undergo Tommy John surgery tomorrow, leaving the Dodgers without their fifth starter for the remainder of this season and likely part of 2014.
Team physician Dr. Neal ElAttrache will perform the surgery at the Kerlan Jobe Orthopedic Clinic in Los Angeles.
Billingsley elected to undergo PRP (platelet-rich plasma) injections and rehabilitation after partially tearing the ulnar collateral ligament in his right elbow last August. He pitched without pain throughout the winter and into spring training until he developed elbow pain during a bullpen session four days ago. An MRI confirmed an injury to the ligament.
Chris Capuano collided with Jason Marquis and fell down covering first base in the first inning. He wasn’t injured on that play, but stayed in the game and strained his left calf muscle running to cover the bag in the second.
Chris Capuano was placed on the 15-day disabled list Wednesday, ruling him out for the next time the Dodgers will need a fifth starter. That spot wouldn’t necessarily come up until the Dodgers’ April 27 home game against the Milwuakee Brewers, but manger Don Mattingly said he would like to use the fifth starter on April 24 at Citi Field against the New York Mets to give Clayton Kershaw, Hyun-Jin Ryu, Chad Billingsley and Josh Beckett an extra day between their next two starts.
Ted Lilly returned to the team one day after making a rehab start for Single-A Rancho Cucamonga and is scheduled to throw a bullpen session in two days. He’s done making rehab starts and is poised to take the fifth turn in the rotation.
“If he slots in, everybody kind of gets an extra day,” Mattingly said. “We really like doing that.”
Chris Capuano collided with Jason Marquis and fell down covering first base in the first inning. He wasn’t injured on that play, but stayed in the game and strained his left calf muscle running to cover the bag in the second. (Associated Press photo)
It’s too soon to know how much time Chris Capuano will need to recover from his strained left calf muscle. It’s also too soon to know if the Dodgers will even notice he’s out.
That’s because they won’t need a fifth starter – Zack Greinke‘s old spot — until April 24, manager Don Mattingly said. The Dodgers have off-days Thursday and Monday.
Capuano came up lame covering first base on a ground ball by Yonder Alonso in the second inning of the Dodgers’ 9-2 loss to the San Diego Padres on Tuesday.
“I took two steps over toward first, felt my left calf strain,” he said.
ESPN has the video clip; you can see Capuano start hobbling around the 15-second mark.
“I came in after the inning, taped it up real tight, tried to brace that ankle,” Capuano said. “I felt like I could sit back on it and push of but it was pretty obvious I wasn’t driving off that leg the way I needed to. The ball just wasn’t coming out right. I wanted to stay out there. I knew we needed innings, but I think we made the right decision. It was hurting.”
Capuano said he’ll get an MRI exam on his left calf Thursday.
Kevin Gregg put on a show in his first spring training with the Dodgers, the team he rooted for growing up.
His release Tuesday was heralded with a one-sentence press release.
Aaron Harang tried to remember the last time he regularly pitched out of the bullpen. He reached back and pulled out Oakland, “10 years ago. I was a rookie breaking in. I was the fifth guy. I’d fill in to start.”
Actually, the most relief appearances Harang has made in a single season was two, back in 2010 — Cincinnati, not Oakland. You can forgive the mental lapse. Of his 299 career games, Harang has started all but six. He is not looking forward to number seven.
“It’s not easy when you’re used to a set routine,” he said.
It’s not every Opening Day that a Single-A baseball team gets an 80-game winner to start its first game of the season.
That will be the case Thursday, when Chad Billingsley takes the hill for the Rancho Cucamonga Quakes.
Billingsley, one of four players on the Dodgers’ disabled list to start the season, said he hasn’t been given an innings limit for the start. That may still come, but the right-hander said he isn’t restricted in any way two weeks after he bruised the index finger on his right hand doing a bunting drill.
The Dodgers still have eight starters in camp, and all eight remain on a starter’s plan. Even Ted Lilly.
“We’ve had some conversations with guys, but at this point everyone is working as starters,” Dodgers manager Don Mattingly told reporters in Glendale this afternoon. “Anything could happen. Until Opening Day we don’t know what’s going to happen. We’ve talked about the possibilities of it with guys just so psychologically guys could know where it sits. We’ve tried to prepare for that as much as possible.”
That the Dodgers are in no rush to get a look at Lilly, Chris Capuano
or Aaron Harang
as relievers is a strong indication that a trade or two (or three) will come soon.