SAN FRANCISCO -- Dodgers catcher Russell Martin has turned over the union player representative duties to pitcher Clayton Kershaw, who was elected to a two-year term in a recent team meeting. Martin said James Loney and A.J. Ellis are alternates.
"It might be a little more work than I anticipate, but it will keep me interested in the business of the baseball world," said Kershaw, in only his second full season in the Major Leagues. "It could be interesting, especially with the bargaining agreement up in a year."
Martin said he was glad to hand off the duties, which include union conference calls and relaying communications to teammates.
"It just takes so much time and Kershaw's got the time as a pitcher," said Martin. "I'm glad I did it and have an idea what it's like."
Dodgers plan in case Manny lands on DL
SAN FRANCISCO -- Manny Ramirez was scheduled to have an MRI on Thursday in Arizona on his strained right hamstring, but manager Joe Torre on Wednesday met with general manager Ned Colletti in anticipation of placing the Dodgers left fielder on the disabled list.
"It doesn't seem too bad, but that doesn't mean potentially he won't be on the DL," Torre said. "It's below the hamstring where it normally would be a serious one. For certain, we'll have to do the conservative thing, since it's early on in the season."
Ramirez was injured Tuesday night running the bases. The 38-year-old had a history of hamstring problems in Boston, although Torre indicated this is a new injury. Earlier this season, Ramirez spent a stint on the disabled list with a strained right calf muscle.
"If we make a decision, we want to be ready to pull the trigger," said Torre, apparently meaning choosing a replacement from Triple-A Albuquerque. Xavier Paul replaced Ramirez earlier this year.
Ramirez's injury comes at a time when he was one of the hottest hitters in the lineup. Despite lacking the power that made him famous, Ramirez has a hit in 10 of his last 11 games and since June 13 is batting .460 (23-for-50). On the season, he has eight home runs and is on pace for only 17, which would be his lowest total for a full season. He also hit 17 his rookie season of 1994, when he played only 91 games in a season shortened by the work stoppage.
Garret Anderson started for the Dodgers in left field Wednesday.
Torre ponders bullpen options for finale
SAN FRANCISCO -- While Dodgers manager Joe Torre held his pregame chat with reporters Wednesday, closer Jonathan Broxton played catch in the outfield to test whether he was sufficiently recovered from Sunday's 48-pitch ninth inning to be available in the finale against the Giants.
"[Hong-Chih] Kuo is available, but Broxton I'd probably like to stay away again," Torre said as Broxton increased the velocity of his throws 150 feet away. "I'm not saying I have to, but it would be nice to do that."
With Broxton unavailable Monday night, Kuo notched his second save of the year. With both Broxton and Kuo mothballed Tuesday night, Torre patched together the final two innings of John Ely's victory with four relievers, Ronald Belisario getting a one-pitch save, the first of his Major League career. It was Belisario's third consecutive game and fourth in five days.
"I'll take his spikes away today," Torre said, indicating that Belisario wouldn't be used. "I was hoping [Justin] Miller would get through the ninth, but when [Pat] Burrell hit that thing 600 feet (for a leadoff home run), I said I better get [Belisario] up. Fortunately, Miller got two more outs [before allowing a hit to Edgar Renteria, when Torre brought in Belisario]."
Torre said he had not received an update on Carlos Monasterios' Monday night rehab start at Triple-A Albuquerque. And he said a decision would soon be needed on Cory Wade, just promoted to Albuquerque on a rehab assignment from spring shoulder surgery. As a Rule 5 Draft pick, Monasterios will be activated when his stint is over, but Wade can be optioned to continue his comeback in the Minor Leagues.
Torre against Strasburg as All-Star
SAN FRANCISCO -- Put Dodgers manager Joe Torre in the camp of those opposed to giving Washington Nationals rookie pitcher Stephen Strasburg an All-Star berth.
"Is he not a potential super pitcher? Sure. But I don't think he's been here long enough," said Torre. "There are other guys out there. The fact he makes the team and somebody else who's been playing since April shouldn't be on it? I don't think that would be the right thing."
Torre said the argument that Strasburg might be the best pitcher to help the National League win -- and earn the league home-field advantage in the World Series -- doesn't sway him.
"I don't buy it," he said. "Just because he's on the team doesn't mean they're going to win. I have nothing against the kid; he's very special from what I've watched. I just think that's overkill if that's the process. I think for the few players that have a terrific first half, they may never do it again and they should be rewarded."
Haeger sent to Triple-A after clearing waivers
SAN FRANCISCO -- Knuckleball pitcher Charlie Haeger, designated for assignment by the Dodgers five days ago, cleared waivers and was outrighted to Triple-A Albuquerque.
Haeger, who opened the season as the fifth starter, was moved off the roster one night after being removed from a start one out shy of qualifying for his first victory of the year. He had an 0-4 record with an 8.40 ERA.
The first of his six starts was a 12-strikeout no-decision in Florida. But he later battled control problems, was put on the disabled list twice with foot injuries and conceded he struggled with his confidence. His Thursday-night start in Anaheim was his first since he failed to retire a batter May 8 against Colorado.
Ken Gurnick is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.