February 2009

And Martin Doubles

Russell Martin, who homered in his first at-bat Thursday, slugged a two-run double in his second at-bat of the Dodgers game against the Giants. — Ken Gurnick

Martin Homers

Dodgers catcher Russell Martin, who said he would try this year not to be as homer-happy as he was last year, homered off Matt Cain in his first Spring at-bat in Thursday’s game against the Giants. — Ken Gurnick

Ethier, Blake Ailing; Mientkiewicz Signed

Manager Joe Torre said outfielder Andre Ethier and third baseman Casey Blake came out of Wednesday’s first game with slight injuries. Ethier was struck by a batted ball on the foot while taking fly balls before the game, played in the game, but felt discomfort afterward. Blake played in the game but felt his groin tighten doing outfield sprints after he was removed. Both figure to miss a few games. Jason Schmidt is on schedule to pitch in Friday’s “B” game. Yhency Brazoban, shut down after a cortisone shot in his shoulder, said he plans to resume tossing Friday.

Torre said the Dodgers signed free agent utilityman Doug Mientkiewicz to a Minor League contract and will bring him to Major League camp. Mientkiewicz, a left-handed hitter, batted .277 with Pittsburgh in 2008. He would be a longshot to make the club with Blake DeWitt, Mark Loretta, Juan Castro and Tony Abreu also in camp and capable of the same roles as Mientkiewicz. — Ken Gurnick

Troncoso Allows Grand Slam

Ramon Troncoso allowed a grand slam to Micah Hoffpauir in the fifth inning as the Cubs took a 5-3 lead over the Dodgers.

DeWitt Adds RBI Single

Blake DeWitt, whose Spring has turned into a fight for a roster spot since the addition of Orlando Hudson, singled home Matt Kemp from second base in the fourth inning to extend the Dodgers lead over the Cubs to 3-1. — Ken Gurnick

Abreu Drives in First Runs

Tony Abreu, who missed the last 1 1/2 seasons with two operations, drove in the first Dodgers runs of the Spring with a two-out, two-run single in the second inning Wednesday for a 2-1 lead over the Cubs. Dodgers starter Claudio Vargas allowed a first-inning run on a double-play ground out. — Ken Gurnick

Schmidt in Bullpen Session

Jason Schmidt felt well enough Wednesday to throw a 40-pitch bullpen session, tentatively keeping him on track to pitch in Friday’s “B” game. Schmidt struggled with his command in the session, which was important enough for manager Joe Torre and pitching coach Rick Honeycutt to watch that they left late for the first exhibition game of the Spring. Torre said there were no physical issues. Schmidt, trying to return from two shoulder operations, is in the mix for the fifth-starter job. — Ken Gurnick

Today’s Lineup

Los Angeles Dodgers


9          Juan Pierre (L)                         LF

12        Brad Ausmus                            C

16        Andre Ethier (L)                       RF

7          James Loney (L)                       1B

23        Casey Blake                             3B

27        Matt Kemp                              CF

33        Blake DeWitt (L)                      2B

3          Delwyn Young (S)                    DH

13        Tony Abreu (S)                        SS


49        Claudio Vargas             RHP



Chicago Cubs


12        Alfonso Soriano                        LF

2          Ryan Theriot                             SS

25        Derrek Lee                               1B

6          Micah Hoffpauir (L)                  DH

18        Geovany Soto                          C

17        Mike Fontenot (L)                    2B

9          Reed Johnson                           CF

19        Richie Robnett  (L)                  RF

73        Bobby Scales (S)                     3B


29        Jeff Samardzija             RHP

Schmidt ‘Alright’ After Inning

Jason Schmidt was able to play catch the day after his one-inning intra-squad game and issued a lukewarm endorsement on his bounce-back. Schmidt said he felt some soreness where he was told to expect to feel it and that he wouldn’t know until Wednesday if he would need an extra day of rest before his next outing. Schmidt is coming off his second operation in the last two years.

Manager Joe Torre said catcher Russell Martin might be limited to designated hitter duties when he reports to Team Canada for the World Baseball Classic. Torre said “we’re babying Russell” as he heals from a torn foot ligament.

In other pitching news, Torre said Hong-Chih Kuo came out of his Monday bullpen session with only slight discomfort and might appear in a game as early as Friday; Cory Wade is throwing again after missing a week with a sore shoulder and Travis Schlichting is back in action after back spasms. Also, Ronald Belisario finally reported after encountering visa problems in Venezuela.

Clayton Kershaw, Shawn Estes and James McDonald were among pitchers throwing live batting practice Tuesday. Torre said Randy Wolf would start Thursday, Chad Billingsley on Friday, Kershaw on Saturday and Hiroki Kuroda on Sunday. — Ken Gurnick  


Intrasquad Game Summary

In the five-inning intrasquad game Monday, Team Koufax scored a 2-1 win over Team Drysdale. Luis Maza’s sacrifice fly scored Jason Repko in a two-run second inning.  Repko was credited with a triple when right fielder Xavier Paul slipped and missed the catch. Chin-lung Hu scored on a Jesus Castillo wild pitch.  Jason Schmidt started and allowed only an infield single in one scoreless inning.  Jonathan Broxton started and retired two of four batters before reaching a 17-pitch limit. Seven left-handed relievers vying for Joe Beimel’s bullpen spot pitched. They were Scott Elbert, Greg Miller, Brent Leach, Jacobo Meque, Erick Threets, Jesus Castillo and Victor Garate. — Ken Gurnick