Dodgers reliever Todd Coffey will undergo season-ending elbow surgery. (Jason O. Watson / Getty Images )
On the day Matt Kemp started his minor league rehabilitation assignment in Rancho Cucamonga, the Dodgers learned reliever Todd Coffey has been lost for the season and outfielder Andre Ethier appeared as if he could be headed to the 15-day disabled list.
Coffey will undergo surgery to repair a partially torn ulnar collateral ligament in his elbow. He was moved to the 15-day disabled list Tuesday and replaced on the active roster by Shawn Tolleson, who had been sent down to triple-A Albuquerque a day earlier.
Meanwhile, Ethier reported feeling something in his strained left rib cage while taking a swing in the batting cages.
Ethier hasn't played since he was injured on June 27 in San Francisco, and Manager Don Mattingly said the Dodgers had to decide soon whether to put Ethier on the disabled list or continue playing a man short.
Mattingly said sidelined second baseman Mark Ellis could be activated from the disabled list on Wednesday, a day earlier than planned. That would seem to indicate the Dodgers are considering putting Ethier on the disabled list.
With Ethier already having missed six games, if he were to be put on the disabled list, he would be eligible to be activated when the Dodgers return from the All-Star break July 13. Kemp is expected to return to the lineup that day.
Coffey, who is 1-0 with a 4.66 earned-run average in 23 appearances, was injured Monday in the eighth inning of the Dodgers' loss to the Cincinnati Reds.
When visited on the mound by trainer Sue Falsone, he insisted he was fine. He threw a few warmup pitches and continued to pitch in the game. He was charged with two runs.
This is Coffey's second time on the disabled list this season. He missed the second half of April because of an inflamed right knee.
Coffey underwent reconstructive elbow surgery as a minor leaguer in 2000.
Known as a workhorse — he made at least 69 appearances in each of the last three seasons — Coffey signed with the Dodgers over the winter for a base salary of $1 million. His contract includes a $2.5-million option for 2013 that the Dodgers could buy out for $300,000.
With Kemp sitting out the All-Star game, Chipper Jones of the Atlanta Braves was selected to represent the National League in his place. Jones, who was selected by NL Manager Tony La Russa, has announced he will retire at the end of the season.
"With him retiring and everything, I think that's cool," Mattingly said.
The All-Star game will be held on July 10 at Kauffman Stadium in Kansas City, the only current major league ballpark in which the 40-year-old Jones has never played.
"Is that true?" Mattingly asked. "That's just fate. There is a baseball god."
Ryan Braun of the Milwaukee Brewers will replace Kemp in the NL's starting outfield.
Third baseman Juan Uribe, who sprained his right ankle Monday night, was out of the lineup. Luis Cruz started in his place. X-rays on Uribe's ankle were negative. … Zack Cozart, who was hit on the helmet by Chad Billingsley the previous night, was back in the Reds' lineup.