Dodgers recall lefty Elbert, DFA Green
Hurler appears ticketed for spot in bullpen as second southpaw
DENVER -- The Dodgers recalled left-handed pitcher Scott Elbert Friday and made room on the roster by designating for assignment infielder Nick Green.
Dodgers manager Joe Torre said Elbert was brought up to serve as a second left-handed reliever for the Rockies series, because Hong-Chih Kuo cannot pitch on back-to-back days and George Sherrill is disabled.
Torre indicated that Elbert is likely to be returned to Triple-A when Charlie Haeger returns from a Minor League rehab assignment for plantar fasciitis. Torre said he expects Haeger to be the fifth starter again, perhaps as early as Tuesday. Torre said that he wants to give John Ely, who started on Thursday against the Cubs and is on track to start on Tuesday, an extra day of rest. Carlos Monasterios made the start in the slot on Friday night.
Elbert was a late scratch from his scheduled Friday night start for Triple-A Albuquerque, where he was 1-1 with a 5.40 ERA. But he has allowed only four earned runs in his last 16 1/3 innings.
He said what probably got him promoted was the way he rebounded in his most recent start after walking six in five innings two starts ago.
"It was just me deciding that it was unacceptable what I was doing," Elbert said. "To be here [the Major Leagues], you can't do that. I had been trying to do too much."
Elbert made the roster over right-hander Jeff Weaver for last year's National League Championship Series against the lefty-dominant Phillies but did not pitch well. He was a candidate to win the fifth-starter job in Spring Training 2010 but pitched poorly and was sent out in mid-March. Left-handers are hitting only .229 against Elbert at Albuquerque, while right-handers are hitting .301.
The Dodgers have been reluctant to risk losing Green, because they need insurance if Rafael Furcal gets hurt again, and Triple-A shortstop Chin-lung Hu suffered a broken nose in a freak trip-and-fall in his Albuquerque home. But Hu is recovering quickly and surgery will not be necessary.
Green can refuse a Minor League assignment and opt for free agency.
Ken Gurnick is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.