With the Dodgers’ outfield set, the regular season winding down and his knee swollen again, Andruw Jones said he had already started looking forward to next year.
“This year,” Jones said, “it’s basically over.”
Jones, who is hitting .161 with three home runs and 14 runs batted in in 74 games, was activated from the disabled list Monday, the day major league teams could expand their rosters. But he is still bothered by his surgically repaired knee, which he reinjured while on a rehab assignment in Las Vegas.
Jones scaled back his workouts this week and admitted he doesn’t think he can make much of a contribution this season, not with only 23 games left and Manager Joe Torre settled on an outfield of Manny Ramirez, Matt Kemp and Andre Ethier.
“If the team needed me and I was the only one who could be out there, I would wrap it up and play,” said Jones, who cut short the first of his two rehab assignments to step in for an injured Juan Pierre in early July. “In this situation, we have other guys who have been getting the job done. I’ll try not to be in their way.”
Jones, who signed a two-year, $36.2-million contract with the Dodgers last winter, again called this season the toughest of his career.
“I’ve got one more year with the Dodgers,” he said. “This year, it’s been a frustrating year. It’s one of those things that you have to put behind you and look forward to next year.”
Kent in the picture
A crutch under his right armpit, Jeff Kent hobbled into center field to be part of the Dodgers’ team picture.
Kent, who underwent surgery on his left knee to repair torn cartilage, didn’t make himself available to reporters, but Torre said the 40-year-old second baseman told him that he “feels wonderful compared to how he felt a few days ago.”
Nomar on the mend
Torre acknowledged that Angel Berroa has started the last five games at shortstop in part because he wants to give a fatigued Nomar Garciaparra time to regain his strength for the final stretch of the season.
Told in advance that he wouldn’t play, Garciaparra has been able to spend extra time in the weight room. Garciaparra said that because of the time off, he’s “definitely” started to get his “baseball legs” under him.
Sleepless in L.A.
Chan Ho Park said that not long after he returned home from Arizona on Sunday night, his wife, Rie, went into labor. Because his wife didn’t give birth to daughter Selynne until 10 a.m., Park didn’t sleep that night. The child, the couple’s second, was born two weeks earlier than expected.
A yawning Park said he hasn’t slept much since.
“I’m tired,” he said. “But I’m ready to pitch.”
Pierre said his lower back, which tightened and forced him out of Tuesday night’s game, felt “all right.” . . . Takashi Saito was moved to the 60-day disabled list to make room for catcher A.J. Ellis, who was called up from triple-A Las Vegas. Saito is eligible to be activated Sept. 11. . . . Trainer Stan Conte watched Rafael Furcal work out in Arizona, where the shortstop has been rehabilitating his surgically repaired back. Conte maintained that Furcal had a shot at playing again this season. . . . The Dodgers and Philadelphia Phillies have expressed interest in second baseman Tadahito Iguchi, according to his agent, Rocky Hall. Iguchi was released by the San Diego Padres this week.