Jones doesn’t want to be a jinx

Times Staff Writer

PHILADELPHIA -- Andruw Jones said he wanted to be at Citizens Bank Park for the opening game of the National League Championship Series instead of in front of the television set in his home in suburban Atlanta. But Jones said he has no plans of rejoining the Dodgers during their playoff run to cheer on his teammates.

“I don’t want to jinx them,” Jones said when reached at his home in suburban Atlanta on Thursday.

Jones said it was out of consideration to his teammates that he asked Manager Joe Torre and General Manager Ned Colletti if he could leave the team when he was moved to the 60-day disabled list on Sept. 13.

“A lot of people need to get stuff OK” in the trainer’s room, he said. “I didn’t want to be in the way.”


Signed by the Dodgers to a two-year, $36.2-million deal last winter, Jones said he is preparing his surgically repaired knee to play in the Dominican Republic in December. The last time he played winter ball was in 1996.

“I had a bad season and a terrible season back-to-back,” Jones said. “I have to have a great season and show people I have baseball left in me.”

Jones said he has maintained contact with Rafael Furcal, Angel Berroa and Manny Ramirez. Asked if he thought the Dodgers should re-sign Ramirez, he said, “I’m sure they should. He’s a great hitter.”

But, he added, “If they sign him, there’s going to be another issue. We’ll still have me and Juan Pierre. [Andre] Ethier has to play. Matt Kemp’s going to have to play.

“After they win the World Series, it’s going to be interesting.”

Jones said he expects to be the everyday center fielder next season.

“I’m an everyday guy or I need to move out,” he said.

Saito out, Kuo in


Takashi Saito was left off the roster to make room for left-hander Hong-Chih Kuo, who missed the Dodgers’ sweep of the Chicago Cubs.

The move left Jonathan Broxton as the undisputed closer.

Saito, who sprained an elbow ligament in July and was out for two months, said he understood why the decision was made. He was hit hard in his only division series appearance, giving up two runs and three hits without recording an out.

“I didn’t make it back in time,” he said. “I accept this reality. The gaps between my good outings and my bad ones were wider than they’ve ever been.”


Torre said the decision was a hard one. He said he regretted not being able to tell Saito of his decision before the roster was released Thursday.

Asked about that, Saito shrugged and laughed.

“That’s the age we live in,” he said.

Saito will throw a bullpen session today and could be sent to the instructional league in Arizona to get himself in shape to pitch in the World Series.


Because Kuo has pitched only twice in the last five weeks, Torre said he wouldn’t use him for more than an inning or on back-to-back days.