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Dodgers elect to keep Tim Federowicz, designate Ramon Hernandez

June 14, 2013|By Steve Dilbeck
  • Tim Federowicz will be the Dodgers' No. 1 backup to A.J. Ellis.
Tim Federowicz will be the Dodgers' No. 1 backup to A.J. Ellis. (Stephen Dunn / Getty Images )

The Dodgers designated catcher Ramon Hernandez for assignment Friday, which if mildly surprising, is still a good sign.

The choice came down to either sending down Tim Federowicz or designating Hernandez. And however painful, the better choice for a team that is still acting like it wants to win now is to keep Federowicz.

This means the Dodgers received precious little in exchange for right-handed starter Aaron Harang, the pitcher they sent to the Rockies early in the season for Hernandez. If that’s a slightly bitter pill, it’s the one to swallow right now.

Federowicz started 10 of 14 games while starter A.J. Ellis was on the disabled list. Ellis (oblique) was activated Friday, meaning the Dodgers had to do something with the extra catcher. Carrying three on the active roster is almost unworkable, though the Dodgers did it for a period this season.

But Federowicz clearly showed he was at least the equal to Hernandez behind the plate and batting, and he’s the one with a future. Federowicz is 25, Hernandez 37.

Though the batting averages of both Federowicz (.211) and Hernandez (.208) are close, Federowicz has batted .257 in June and shown a growing inclination for a timely hit. His bases-clearing double won Tuesday’s brawl game in the bottom of the eighth.

The last time the Dodgers saw Hernandez, he was hitting a home run on Wednesday.

The Dodgers immediately placed Ellis back in the lineup for Friday’s game in Pittsburgh. Shortstop Hanley Ramirez (hamstring) is also back in the lineup batting cleanup, with Yasiel Puig back in the leadoff role.

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