For the ninth game of the season, Dodgers Manager Don Mattingly trotted out something still different -- the cautious lineup.
He decided to keep Yasiel Puig (sore hamstring) and Carl Crawford (ankle) out of the lineup against the Seattle Mariners, and then got a tad inventive with his batting order.
Struggling Yasmani Grandal (.176) is batting second for only the third time in his career. Andre Ethier, the man without a starting position, is in right for Puig and batting fifth. Scott Van Slyke gets a rare start against a right-hander -- Taijuan Walker -- and will play left field and bat sixth. Hot-hitting Alex Guerrero (eight RBIs in the last three games) remains on the bench.
Puig had hoped to play Wednesday, but then he also wanted to play Tuesday after tweaking his hamstring Monday against the Mariners. But the Dodgers elected to play it smart and, with no game scheduled Thursday, give him three consecutive days off to rest the hamstring.
“Just decided to take advantage of the off day [Thursday], give him the extra day and the best chance to see where we’re at,” Mattingly said.
“Right now I feel like he’s going to be ready to go Friday.”
Crawford jammed his ankle going back hard into second base in the first inning Tuesday.
“He stayed in and didn’t feel anything after the game, he just woke up stiff and came in and got some work done,” Mattingly said. “He feels good and like he can play, but just trying to use a little bit of caution with Carl and not let this turn into something.”
Mattingly said the Dodgers did not believe Crawford had seriously injured the ankle and he should be able to pinch hit Wednesday.
“I don’t think there’s any real sense of fear, anything to do with the ligament or he turned it or anything more, he just jammed it,” Mattingly said.
Also Wednesday, with David Huff designated for assignment, the Dodgers called up Carlos Frias from triple-A Oklahoma City and added him to the 25-man roster. Frias was scheduled to start Wednesday for Oklahoma.
Mattingly did not say whether Frias would take the turn the next time injured Hyun-jin Ryu’s spot comes up April 25.
“I don’t think I said that,” he said. “We haven’t made a decision on that.
“It fits into what we need right now.”
Frias will go into the bullpen for now and could be used as a long reliever.