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Dodgers' Jim Thome still hampered by sore foot

BASEBALL

The problem has limited how much he has been able to help the team. Meanwhile, Manager Joe Torre says champagne is for when they clinch the division, not sooner.

September 24, 2009|Dylan Hernandez

WASHINGTON — Saying that nothing was seriously wrong with his surgically repaired left wrist, Orlando Hudson smiled as he recalled his fall as he ran through first base Wednesday night.

Hudson reached base on his ninth-inning grounder because of a throwing error by Nationals shortstop Cristian Guzman, but he tripped on first baseman Adam Dunn's leg in the process and used his left hand to break his fall.

Hudson spent several minutes on the ground and was forced out of the game.

A postgame examination by trainer Stan Conte showed that the part of the wrist that Hudson hurt wasn't in the same area that he had operated last season and that he hadn't lost any range of motion.

Told that he was listed as day to day, Hudson was able to joke about the incident at the expense of Dunn, his teammate in Arizona last season.

"He's not used to playing first base," Hudson said, laughing. "Instead of putting his foot, he decided to put his whole leg on the bag, man. Unbelievable. He came over to apologize. I said, 'Dunn, how are you going to put your whole leg, your big donkey leg, on the top of the bag?' "

He's still only 25?

Brad Ausmus said that in his 17 seasons in the major leagues, he has never seen anyone like Matt Kemp.

"At 25, he's probably the most complete player at that age that I've ever played with, in terms of hitting, hitting with power, running and stealing bases, playing defense, arm strength," Ausmus said.

Told of what Ausmus said about him, Kemp said, "I have to thank God for that, man. He's blessed me with what I'm doing now."

Kemp, who turned 25 on Wednesday, is batting .304 with 25 home runs, 97 runs batted in and 34 steals.

No player in franchise history has batted .300 or more, hit 25 home runs or more, driven in 100 runs or more and stolen 30 bases or more in a season.

Kemp saw the end of his 13-game hitting streak Wednesday, when he was 0 for 4 with a walk.

Hold the bubbly

The Dodgers can secure a playoff berth tonight, but Manager Joe Torre said his team won't be popping any champagne in the clubhouse if that happens.

"To me, it's sort of a steppingstone to where we want to wind up and that's to win the division," Torre said. "It's something to feel good about, but we're not all the way to where we want to get here."

Thome's foot still hurting

Jim Thome said that he continues to be hindered by the foot problems that have limited him to 10 pinch-hit appearances in his three weeks with the Dodgers.

"I came over to try to help," Thome said. "But this little foot thing I've had is a pain. . . . It's not any worse than it was two weeks ago, but it's not any better."

Thome's problems resurfaced Tuesday night in the eighth inning. He looked as if he had a chance to reach base, as Washington second baseman Ian Desmond bobbled the grounder he hit. But saying he felt something when he ran out of the box, Thome jogged down the line and was thrown out.

Thome singled in the ninth inning Wednesday and was replaced by pinch-runner Juan Castro.

Blake sits

Casey Blake was held out of the lineup to rest his left hamstring, which he strained again Tuesday. Torre guessed the third baseman would be out for a couple of days.

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dylan.hernandez@latimes.com

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