Dodgers second baseman Mark Ellis continues to have problems running because… (Elsa Garrison / Getty Images )
The Dodgers are about done with this Mark Ellis experiment.
Look for him to be placed on the 15-day disabled list Friday when the Dodgers activate Clayton Kershaw from the bereavement list to pitch in San Francisco.
Wednesday will mark the fourth consecutive day the Dodgers have played at least one man down while waiting to see if Ellis can recover from a strained right quadriceps he sustained Friday night.
Thursday is an off day, so unless he makes some kind of remarkable recovery, the Dodgers will be forced to finally put him on the disabled list on Friday.
“We’re getting there,” said Manager Don Mattingly. “Obviously Kersh is going to be pitching Friday. Now with Carl [Crawford] a little up in the air too, that makes it a little dicey.”
Crawford was not in the lineup Wednesday for the second consecutive game because of a tight hamstring. Playing short one man is already a tad risky, but two down is asking for trouble.
Ellis is hitting and taking infield practice, but running is something else. He’s jogged in the outfield, but he's neither run hard nor run the bases. If the Dodgers place him on the 15-day DL it would be retroactive to April 27, meaning he would not be eligible to be activated until May 12, missing eight more games.
Now that the Dodgers have Hanley Ramirez back, they could always send an infielder down and bring up an outfielder or corner infielder. Justin Sellers, who has already been optioned this season, could be sent down. Luis Cruz continues to struggle but is out of options and would have to be designated for assignment. Somebody on the Dodgers must think he would be claimed, or it already would have happened.
Mattingly favors keeping both for now.
“We still have Jerry [Hairston Jr.] and Shoe [Skip Schumaker] who can play the outfield,” he said. “Which takes us to five, with one right and one left [reserve].
“And our guys pretty much play every day so there’s not a ton of at-bats out there. Sells is able to play all three spots – second, third and short – for us. He gives us that guy who can play all over.”
There are currently six Dodgers on the DL.