Before Sunday's series finale with the Angels at Dodger Stadium, Dodgers manager Don Mattingly gave updates on the status of a few injured Dodgers. In addition to Casey Blake's return to the starting lineup after dealing with a pinched nerve in his neck for two weeks, it appears Marcus Thames and his strained left calf will avoid the disabled list. However, injured closer Jonathan Broxton suffered a setback in his rehab.
Broxton, who pitched in two rehab games this past week with Triple A Albuquerque, felt tightness in his right elbow on Saturday while throwing off flat ground at Dodger Stadium. Broxton was set to pitch in two more rehab games Sunday and Monday, this time with Class A Rancho Cucamonga, but those plans have been canceled. Broxton, who has been on the DL with a bone bruise since May 4 in that right elbow, will be reevaluated on Monday. His anticipated return next weekend in Anaheim looks like an extreme long shot, said Mattingly.
As for Thames, his left calf has been steadily improving since he strained it during Friday night's game against the Angels. He is available to pinch hit today, though he still can't play in the field. However, the Dodgers after today play their next six games in Minnesota and Anaheim, with the designated hitter available, a position Thames figures to play often this coming week.
Mattingly also said he would like to have both Matt Kemp and Andre Ethier serve as designated hitter at least once each, to give them a day off of sorts without taking their bat out of the lineup. As David Young of True Blue LA noted, Kemp and Ethier have combined to hit .321/.403/.540 while every other Dodger position player has combined to hit just .243/.300/.332 this season.
Today's 1:10 p.m. PDT game will be televised by Prime Ticket (Dodgers) and KCOP (Angels). For more news and information on the Angels, the Dodgers, or the Freeway Series, be sure to read the SB Nation blogs True Blue LA and Halos Heaven.