Scott Van Slyke/Photo courtesy of Los Angeles Dodgers
Reserve outfielder Scott Van Slyke has not played since Monday because of a sore right hand and remains day-to-day, manager Don Mattingly said.
“He was a lot better today,” he said Saturday as the Dodgers took batting practice ahead of their game with the Pittsburgh Pirates. “He’ll hit today out here. Today is maybe just a little bit cautious with him, but I think it’s something that’s getting better.”
Van Slyke was announced as a pinch-hitter in Tuesday’s game against Colorado, but did not take the at-bat when a pitching change was made.
Yasiel Puig and Howie Kendrick made progress in their hamstring injuries Tuesday, while a new injury has sidelined outfielder Scott Van Slyke.
Puig jogged on the field for the first time since he strained his hamstring in August. Puig had been working out in a pool and on an Alter-G machine in Arizona before returning to Los Angeles with the team Sunday night.
Kendrick played a simulated game Tuesday at Dodger Stadium for the second straight day and is scheduled to run tomorrow.
Van Slyke, meanwhile, has a cyst on his right hand. Here’s what manager Don Mattingly said about each of them Tuesday:
Jose Peraza is 3-for-3 in stolen base attempts since joining the Dodgers. (Getty Images)
SAN DIEGO — The Dodgers’ recent success stealing bases makes for nice statistics. An unexpected streak of 13 steals in 13 attempts entering Saturday’s game against the Padres means the Dodgers are no longer last in baseball in stolen bases or stolen-base success rate.
Going beyond the numbers, this makes for even better strategy.
“It’s something that’s small but yet plays big,” Dodgers first base coach Davey Lopes said. “Now we keep this approach that we have now and bring it to a playoff situation, now we can manufacture a run here. People can’t say ‘well, they’re not going to run.’ Now all of a sudden they’re starting to run. What’s the deal?”
Lopes identified a couple reasons for the Dodgers’ newfound success.
Dodgers outfielder Scott Van Slyke has stuck to hitting ever since he made one pitching appearance in a Single-A game in 2008. (Associated Press photo)
Dodgers pitcher Mat Latos was rested enough that he could’ve pitched Monday night. When the Dodgers beat the Giants 5-4 in the 14th inning, that no longer became a necessity.
Besides, Latos wouldn’t have pitched anyway. Manager Don Mattingly decided he’d rather save Latos for his next scheduled start in San Diego and use a former pitcher to mop up: Outfielder Scott Van Slyke.
“I would’ve liked to pitch,” Van Slyke said.
OAKLAND — Carl Crawfored is playing left field, and Scott Van Slyke is the Dodgers’ designated hitter, because Van Slyke is still recovering from a bout with the flu over the weekend.
“With Scotty, him being sick last week, extra innings last night, early game today, it was pretty easy to go Scotty DHing today,” Dodgers manager Don Mattingly said. “Scotty’s a really good defender, one of our better outfield defenders … but today it’s a matter of him being a little bit down the last few days. I could see him here last night looking like he was beat.”
Van Slyke is over the flu, Mattingly said.
“It’s just how you would feel if you had the flu for 2 or 3 days, coming back,” he said. “You feel a little winded.”