Jon Garland left today's game against the Seattle Mariners with an oblique injury, as reported by Bill Shaikin of the Los Angeles Times.
Oblique injuries aren't the end of the world, but if it's a more-than-mild strain of the oblique, Garland could spend some time on the disabled list. He should have an MRI in the next couple of days.
With Tim Redding lighting it up (a term in which I use loosely) and Vicente Padilla recovering from elbow surgery, could he have just nabbed the fifth spot in the Dodgers' rotation?
Not so fast.
Eric Stephen of True Blue L.A. pointed out that the Dodgers conceivably wouldn't need a fifth starter until around April 10 or 12. That would give Xavier Paul couple of weeks or so as a Dodger before the team would need to call up a fifth starter from Triple-A (Redding, John Ely) or go with a spot starter (Blake Hawksworth) until Garland is 100 percent healthy.
However, as Mike Petriello of Mike Scioscia's Tragic Illness points out, the extra couple weeks wouldn't do much for Paul's long-term future as a Dodger. Do you remember when Cody Ross went nuts for an eight-game stretch in 2006? He was immediately traded for a player to be named later (Ben Kozlowski, who pitched all of two games with the Rangers in 2002).
In no way am I saying the Dodgers should still have Ross; I'm just saying if Paul gets ridiculously hot, there's no guarantee he wouldn't be shipped off for a PTBNL.
But back to Redding. Redding has thrown eight scoreless innings this spring, walking two, hitting one and striking out four batters. Not exactly a dominant performance, but a 0.00 ERA is a 0.00 ERA.
Would the Dodgers be better off having Redding as the No. 5 starter if Garland requires a stint on the DL? Is two weeks and limited appearances enough to justify letting Paul leave on waivers? What about Ely? Would Paul even get enough playing time as the fifth outfielder? These are the questions potentially facing General Manager Ned Colletti. We'll see what happens.
Jerry Sands got on base again today. No shock there. His slash line this spring is .467/.500/1.000, if ya need him.
After posting the statistical leaders through the first 10 Spring Training games, the Dodgers' offense exploded. Rod Barajas, Andre Ethier, Tony Gwynn, Matt Kemp, Aaron Miles, Paul and Sands have all homered this week.
Ramon Troncoso continued his solid spring, pitching 1 1/3 innings in relief of the injured Garland today. He sits at six scoreless innings, allowing five hits, striking out five and perhaps the most encouraging statistic: zero walks.
Hong-Chih Kuo made his spring debut, throwing one inning while giving up a home run to Jack Wilson. Kuo also struck out a batter.
A belated congratulations to Kim Ng, former Dodgers' assistant general manager, for accepting a position to be the next senior vice president of Major League Baseball.
This move was an absolute no-brainer for Ng. Even if the McCourts' situation was fine-and-dandy, she would have been foolish to pass up this opportunity. Former Dodgers' manager Joe Torre made the hire.
She had the assistant GM position with the Dodgers for nine years. It's a shame she didn't get a chance to be the general manager. I still maintain (and I'm not alone) that if a woman is going to be a general manager of a professional sports team, Ng will get the first crack at it.
Shaikin has a nice story on Ng and her decision.