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Andre Ethier might play in Game 3, but Hanley Ramirez looks doubtful

October 13, 2013|By Steve Dilbeck
  • Dodgers shortstop Hanley Ramirez probably won't be healthy enough to play against the St. Louis Cardinals in Game 3 of the National League Championship Series on Monday.
Dodgers shortstop Hanley Ramirez probably won't be healthy enough… (Harry How / Getty Images )

Now for the Dodgers’ definitive injury report on Hanley Ramirez and Andre Ethier -- they have no idea.

It could, of course, just be that they’re not telling, but they somewhat understandably said during Sunday’s optional workout at Dodger Stadium that they were uncertain whether either would be able to start Monday’s crucial Game 3 of the National League Championship Series against the St. Louis Cardinals.

Ramirez (ribs) said he’s planning to try to play, and Ethier (ankle) said he just did not know whether he could effectively play the field.

Ramirez had a CT scan on his sore left ribs Sunday, but the Dodgers were not planning on releasing the results until Monday. The results were not yet known during the media session.

Ramirez said he felt no better Sunday than he had Saturday, yet was still hopeful of playing in Game 3.

“Why not? It’s one day extra,” Ramirez said. “It can make a difference. I do ice every 20 minutes and they’re doing a pretty good job.”

Sorry, one day isn’t going to make much difference if you have cracked or severely bruised ribs. That’s an injury – like Ethier’s shin splints – that requires time to heal. Time the Dodgers do not have.

“Even if it’s cracked or not, it’s just the pain,” Ramirez said.

“At this time of the year, you just have to grind it and let things happen.”

That’s a lot of pain, particularly when he says he has trouble on his swing’s follow-through and reaching with his glove for a line drive. And trying to sleep.

They could shoot him up with painkillers, but I can’t see him playing Monday. And maybe not for the rest of the series.

Ethier did not test his ankle Sunday, and said playing Monday was a decision that would likely not be made until shortly before game time.

“I think we’re past the process of testing it,” Ethier said. “We know where we stand moving forward. The only thing that can make it feel better is extensive rest. And we’re not in position where we can rest.

“If it feels good enough where we can push forward and keep going and play through it and play to our ability, then we’ll do it.”

Ethier is able to hit; his problem is getting explosion and speed going in center field. Play him and risk his not getting to balls in the gaps or at the wall.

But the Dodgers are down, 0-2, in this best-of-seven series and cannot afford to lose Monday.

“We need all the hands we can right now to go out there and figure out a way to get back in this series,” Ethier said.

If Ramirez is out, expect the Dodgers to gamble and try to start Ethier, limited as he is. Time is that luxury they no longer have.

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