Another day, another injury. This time, as very much expected when we saw him limp into second base last night, it’s Justin Turner. That’s obviously 15 days a minimum, but with the way he reacted to that hamstring, don’t be surprised if it’s longer than that. If he’s back before August, I’ll be pleasantly surprised; it is one of several reasons why the Dodgers really very badly need to find some more infield depth.
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Turner’s journey to join Carl Crawford and Chone Figgins on the 15-day disabled list brings Carlos Triunfel back to the active roster, and as sad as it is to say, he’s desperately needed. After all of one day back in the starting lineup, Hanley Ramirez is again on the bench and not available, though it’s not because of the shoulder that sidelined him for most of the week — it’s the left calf that ended his day early yesterday.
As Jon Weisman shares at Dodger Insider, the team is finally considering a move to disable Ramirez:
Don Mattingly told reporters today that Ramirez is not available today because of his left calf issue, and that the team has had discussions about whether to put him on the disabled list and bring him back after the All-Star Break.
As I’ve been saying endlessly, I really want Ramirez on the disabled list, away from physical activity, and not either trying to play through pain or leaving Mattingly shorthanded. Unfortunately, with Turner now gone, it’s much more difficult to do that. I know plenty of people want to see Erisbel Arruebarrena in the bigs daily; I don’t, really, because I’m unconvinced he can be even a mediocre big league hitter right now. (Please, please don’t quote me 60-something ABQ plate appearances.)
Not that Miguel Rojas is either, of course, but the difference is that he’s a minor-league lifer stop gap, while Arruebarrena really needs the time to continue developing his bat playing every day in the minors. Perhaps Rojas’ glove makes him fine in the short term, but I think we all know that no one wants Rojas to be starting for long stretches of time.
Anyway, we talked about all that this morning, and there’s bigger fish to fry here. The Dodgers are just a single game out of first place, they have Clayton Kershaw on the mound — making his first start at home since the no-hitter against Colorado — and the Cardinals counter with Shelby Miller, who was outstanding last year, looks considerably less productive this year, and had to leave his last start early with back stiffness. At the same time, Tim Hudson and Homer Bailey face off up the coast in San Francisco. I always knew the Dodgers would close the gap with the Giants somewhat — as I said many times, the Giants weren’t going to keep up a 106-victory pace all year — but I certainly never thought it would happen this quickly.
It’s possible that by the end of the day, this team will be tied for first place. Where’s your chemistry now, national media? As I said on Twitter earlier, there’s a bigger part of me that wants the Dodgers to overtake the Giants because I want to shame those who claimed the Dodgers could never catch the Giants because of clubhouse issues than there is that wants to see this because my favorite team would be in first place. That’s probably not healthy, I know. But what can I say? It’s true.
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