I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but the return of a handful of Dodgers this season isn’t looking very good.
Dodgers super-utilityman Jerry Hairston Jr. has undergone season ending hip surgery. This is a huge blow to the Dodgers roster. Hairston was hitting .273/.342/.387 in 267 plate appearances for the Dodgers this season. Filling in for the waste of space Juan Uribe for a good part of the season, Hairston was a huge contributor to the Dodgers success in the first half of the season, his versatility and ability to get on base will sorely be missed. Hairston is under contract already for 2013 at $3.75MM.
Blake Hawksworth has also undergone season ending shoulder surgery. Hawksworth has been on the DL all season after right elbow surgery, he also had his rehab shut down in July after feeling pain in the area of his clavicle. Now his shoulder, with the large string of injuries Hawksworth has decided to play it safe and prepare for 2013. Hawksworth is expected to be non-tendered by the Dodgers at the end of the season.
Matt Guerrier is still not ready to go as he still battles withÂ tendinitisÂ on his right pitching elbow. Hopefully Guerrier is able to get on track and return in the first part of September after the rosters expand.
Justin Sellers is set to have season ending surgery in the next day or so for a bulging disc in his lower back. Sellers hasn’t been a factor for the Dodgers in 2012, largely due to injuries, but with the impact play of Elian Herrera and Luis Cruz, the Dodgers loss of Sellers has been a non-issue. Â I gotta admit It would been nice to have him around, especially with the horrendous play of Uribe and the loss of Hairston. But I’m sure the Dodgers will be just fine with Herrera and Cruz the rest of the way.
Alright a little bit of good news. Ted Lilly is scheduled to throw a bullpen session tomorrow. If it all goes well Lilly could make a return to the Dodgers roster when the rosters Â expand on September 1. Dee Gordon also seems to be progressing well and he could return to the Dodges sometime within the next 10 days or so.
Of course the return of Gordon is going to cause a bit of a logjam on the roster. With the play of Luis Cruz it’s going to be difficult to put him on the bench when Gordon returns. With Cruz playing so well I don’t see Mattingly putting a hot bat on the bench with the offense slumping. More than likely, Mattingly will play matchups and give regular rest to the starters the rest of the way. I still see Mattingly going with Hanley Ramirez, Dee Gordon, on the left side. Cruz will get regular play, perhaps shifting Mark Ellis to a part time role the rest of the way. Either way you slice it Mattingly has his work cut out for him, but that’s a good problem to have now, isn’t it?