Dodgers' Ramirez out; Blake back to L.A.
PITTSBURGH -- Outfielder Manny Ramirez was out of the Dodgers' lineup Monday because of a sore left hamstring, the same problem that forced third baseman Casey Blake to return early to Los Angeles to be treated by a team doctor.
The Dodgers, with their magic number for clinching the NL West stalled at one after their 11-1 loss in Pittsburgh, also were without infielder Ronnie Belliard, who injured his groin while running the bases in the ninth inning Sunday. The Dodgers are being cautious because Belliard has had previous groin problems.
Ramirez was available to pinch hit against the Pirates, but Belliard is expected to be out of a couple of days -- probably for a two-game series in San Diego that begins on Tuesday. Belliard underwent an MRI exam and got an injection before leaving Pittsburgh.
"Manny felt something the other day similar to where Casey has a little bit of a hammy. It happened Saturday but it doesn't seem too serious," manager Joe Torre said Monday. "I had planned to give him a day and [play him Monday] ... he came in today still a little sore."
Ramirez also didn't start Sunday but was used as a pinch hitter. He didn't get off the bench Monday.
Asked whether he was concerned about so many nagging injuries with the playoffs only a week away, Torre said, "I'd be more concerned if it were a week from now."
Blake sat out his sixth consecutive game with what was supposed to be a minor injury but one that keeps lingering. He flew back to Los Angeles to consult with team physician Neal ElAttrache and undergo treatment after the problem persisted while he was running before Sunday's game.
"He felt the tightness again [Sunday] when he ran," Torre said. "He'll join us in San Diego."
Shortstop Rafael Furcal also was out of the lineup Monday, but Torre said he was due a day off.
It got worse for the Dodgers after the game started, too -- reliever Charlie Haeger was lifted in the fifth inning after Luis Cruz's line drive struck him on the right knee and ricocheted into left field. Haeger was limping when he left the field, but Torre said the injury isn't believed to be significant.
Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press
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