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Dodgers’ Caleb Ferguson scheduled for rehab assignment this week

Milwaukee Brewers v Los Angeles Dodgers
Caleb Ferguson delivers a pitch against the Milwaukee Brewers on April 13. Ferguson is working toward coming back from a strained oblique muscle.
(Yong Teck Lim / Getty Images)

Caleb Ferguson will begin a rehab assignment later this week after throwing in a simulated game Tuesday at Dodger Stadium, manager Dave Roberts said.

Ferguson, 22, was placed on the 10-day injured list April 28 with a strained oblique. The left-hander said he hasn’t felt any pain since his last outing April 27. He threw approximately 20 pitches Tuesday to Joc Pederson and Travis d’Arnaud, using his entire repertoire.

Ferguson landed on the injured list at a convenient time for the Dodgers because they needed to make room on the active roster for Rich Hill, who made his first start April 28. Barring another injury to a pitcher, Ferguson’s return will force the Dodgers to make a decision with their bullpen if they don’t option him to the minors. They soon will need a roster spot for left-hander Tony Cingrani, who threw a scoreless inning for single-A Rancho Cucamonga on Saturday and was moved up to triple-A Oklahoma City on Tuesday. Cingrani started the season on the injured list with a shoulder impingement. Pitchers’ rehab assignments can last up to 30 days.

Of the eight Dodgers relievers, right-handers Pedro Baez, Ross Stripling and Dylan Floro, and left-handers Scott Alexander and Julio Urias have minor league options. Baez, Alexander and Floro have been important cogs this season, while Stripling and Urias recently were moved from the rotation.

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Stripling was charged with three runs in one-third of an inning in his first relief appearance. He’s since registered two scoreless innings. Urias, moved to the bullpen to curtail his workload, has allowed two runs across 5⅔ innings in four relief outings. The Dodgers prefer to unleash the left-hander for multiple innings, but Urias’ last two appearances were an inning or less. On Monday, he retired the side in order in a 14-pitch ninth inning to earn his first career save.

Yimi Garcia owned a 4.70 earned-run average entering Tuesday — the second-highest among Dodgers relievers behind Joe Kelly, who signed a contract worth $25 million guaranteed over the winter — but doesn’t have any options left. To have Ferguson or Cingrani replace Garcia, the Dodgers would need to designate him for assignment and risk losing him on the waiver wire.

Short hops

The Dodgers said they sold more than 20,000 group tickets for their Mexican Heritage Day on Wednesday, calling it “the largest ever special event ticket pack in MLB history.” The high demand prompted the club to decide to mail the night’s giveaway — a jersey — to fans who purchased their tickets after the morning of April 28. … Corey Seager was given Tuesday off as the Dodgers continue to closely monitor his workload. The shortstop underwent Tommy John and hip surgeries last year. Seager has hits in his last three games after going one for his previous 26.

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jorge.castillo@latimes.com

Twitter: @jorgecastillo


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