Four days after aggravating his left hamstring,
Puig said on Friday he would be able to return the next day, but Mattingly had been less encouraging.
"I was just really waiting for medical more than anything else," Mattingly said. "Medical said, 'Yes.' Stan [Conte, head trainer] just came into the office early and said he was ready to go."
Puig was off to a slow start and actually had been benched April 11, before returning to hit home runs in consecutive games. He's hitting .222 on the season.
Puig's return, however, did not mean
"Carl’s not feeling good," Mattingly said. "Carl’s been sick, kinda the stuff we've had, [the
Ethier has started five of the previous six games, going seven for 17 (.412) with three RBI, a double, triple and home run.
"Andre's been able to stay sharp, and he's played well," Mattingly said. "It's just worked out well.
"This is the best he's looked in a while. This is probably the healthiest he's been for the most time."
Mattingly, who grows more careful with the press with each season -- if not by the day -- would not say that has earned Ethier more playing time when everyone is healthy.
"I'm not going to go into any of that," he said. "We're going to play our whole roster. Right now there's plenty of at-bats for everybody. I'm not naming starter or relievers or extras. We're just playing the lineups and going from there."
Saturday's Dodgers lineup:
Adrian Gonzalez 1B
Howie Kendrick 2B
Joc Pederson CF
Zack Grienke P