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DODGERS FYI

{Manny Ramirez wasn't up to starting} {He was originally in the lineup, but asked to be taken out because his hand was still sore.}

July 23, 2009|Dylan Hernandez and Bill Shaikin

Manny Ramirez took one look at the lineup posted on the wall and shouted across the clubhouse.

"Change the lineup, Joe!" he hollered as he laughed.

Over the next 10 minutes, Manager Joe Torre drew up a new alignment, this one without Ramirez's name.

Hit on the left hand the previous night by a fastball from Cincinnati Reds starter Homer Bailey, Ramirez said he expected to be back in the lineup when the Dodgers open a three-game series against the Florida Marlins on Friday.

X-rays taken of Ramirez's hand were negative. The left fielder didn't take batting practice and was fitted for a protective pad for his left hand by the training staff.

Torre said that Ramirez told him he would be available to pinch-hit. And he did in dramatic style, hitting a grand slam in the sixth inning of Wednesday's win over Cincinnati.

Asked if he was worried that he had broken his hand when he was hit, Ramirez replied, "Yeah, I was worried. Thank God the X-rays came back negative. . . . It was bad. It was real sore."

But Ramirez was in a jovial mood, walking around the clubhouse holding the bobblehead made in his image that the Dodgers handed out to the first 50,000 fans that night.

"I'm going to send my bobblehead to left field," he said. "It's going to be in left field with Juan Pierre."

Ramirez said he liked the detail on the bobblehead, pointing to the dirt on the batting helmet and the dreadlocks, including a colored braid.

"I love it," he said.

One detail was missed, however.

"My pocket's not out," Ramirez said, pointing to the bobblehead's rear end. "They screwed up on that one."

Trade deadline near

As the Dodgers pursue Toronto Blue Jays ace Roy Halladay, one of the Blue Jays' top scouts watched the Dodgers play Tuesday and Wednesday. Dodgers General Manager Ned Colletti, asked whether he had exchanged names with the Blue Jays, said: "We know who they have interest in."

The Dodgers have assigned scouts to watch Halladay's last two starts. Logan White, the Dodgers' assistant general manager for scouting, watched Halladay and Cleveland Indians ace Cliff Lee this week, although it is uncertain whether the Indians would trade Lee.

The Dodgers do not plan to include Clayton Kershaw in a Halladay trade offer. Steve Springer, the Blue Jays' scout in attendance at Dodger Stadium on Tuesday and Wednesday, could help Toronto determine whether another player on the Dodgers' roster might fit in a package for Halladay.

The Dodgers consider minor league shortstop Devaris Gordon all but untouchable, although they could reconsider if the Blue Jays would discuss a package that did not include a major leaguer. Other minor leaguers who could be of interest include pitchers Josh Lindblom, Ethan Martin and Chris Withrow, third baseman Josh Bell and outfielder Andrew Lambo.

Short hops

On the night the Dodgers gave away bobbleheads made in the image of a player who was suspended for violating baseball's drug policy, the ceremonial first pitch was thrown out by one of the godfathers of marijuana humor, Cheech Marin. The comedian is a spokesman for San Manuel Indian Bingo and Casino, which sponsored the Ramirez bobblehead. . . . Hong-Chih Kuo pitched in back-to-back games for Class A Inland Empire on Monday and Tuesday and could be activated next week. He will pitch in the minors again Friday.

Times staff writer Helene Elliott contributed to this report.

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dylan.hernandez@latimes.com

bill.shaikin@latimes.com

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