LOS ANGELES -- An MRI on Tuesday revealed a strain in Rafael Furcal's lower back and he is day-to-day. Dodgers manager Joe Torre said the shortstop would definitely not play on Wednesday.Furcal hurt himself playing a ball in the hole on Monday night against the Padres, twisting at a sharp angle to make a throw to first. The MRI's result was potentially excellent for the Dodgers, who already learned Tuesday that Manny Ramirez had a setback in his injury rehabilitation and that Russell Martin will need an MRI on Wednesday. Furcal has had past back problems and missed 125 games because of a lower back injury that required surgery in 2008. "Especially with his history with his back," Torre said. "I haven't talked to our trainer about it, but I heard that result part, that tells it was just an unusual play where he tweaked it." Furcal, an All-Star, has had a resurgent season with a .316 average, the fourth-best mark in the National League. He spent time on the disabled list this season for a hamstring injury and missed more time on the bereavement list, but his back, a problem in years past, had been healthy. Jamey Carroll started at shortstop, batting eighth, on Tuesday, with Scott Podsednik, Ryan Theriot and Andre Ethier at the top of the order. Furcal had hit leadoff until the arrival of Podsednik, then Torre tried him out at Nos. 2 and 3.
Martin added to list of hurting Dodgers
LOS ANGELES -- Russell Martin is to go for an MRI on his right hip on Wednesday after an awkward step hyperextended his leg in the second inning on Tuesday at Dodger Stadium. He didn't exit the game until the top of the eighth, when Brad Ausmus entered."I still had mobility, you know, but I obviously didn't have all of it," Martin said. "I know I can play with this, it's just whether or not if I play with it is it going to worse?" Martin's two-run double was the difference in a 2-1 Dodgers win over the Padres. He moved to third on a wild pitch before the inning ended with the unlucky sequence. Jamey Carroll flied out to center and Chris Denorfia threw to the plate in time to catch a tagging Martin, who did not slide. There was no collision, but Martin fell awkwardly right after touching home and went to the ground. "It was after I touched the plate," he said. "It was right where the grass meets the dirt. I kind of, I took a stride, I almost peeked back to look at what the call was, and that's when I hyperextended it." The decision not to slide was chivalrous, but not necessarily inconsequential. "It looked like it was going to be bang-bang, I was indecisive whether to hit him [catcher Nick Hundley]," Martin said. "He kind of just stood there, and it didn't look like the ball was getting there and I don't want to hit the catcher when he doesn't have the ball in his hand. It was so bang-bang, it caught me in between."
Dodgers place Weaver on disabled list
LOS ANGELES -- It turns out there was something wrong with Jeff Weaver.The Dodgers placed the soon-to-be 34-year-old on the 15-day disabled list on Tuesday because of tendinitis in his left knee. Reliever Ramon Troncoso was recalled from Triple-A Albuquerque to assume the vacated roster spot. Weaver, 5-1 with a 5.35 ERA in 36 appearances, had very visibly struggled in his last five outings, when he let up 10 runs -- half of those in two innings on Monday. Weaver said he first felt pain in his knee a couple of weeks ago, something he had experienced before, but never as persistently. Weaver did not alert the team until pitching coach Rick Honeycutt talked to him after Monday night's 10-5 loss to the Padres. "For a couple outings, it was irrelevant and I had some success, so I didn't really think twice about it," Weaver said. "But now when it's affecting the outcome of games, it's in all of our benefits not to go out there. They talked to me after the game yesterday. Command is a big part of my game ... obviously they're going to ask questions about what's going on. I guess it's time to throw pride aside and take care of it and come back 100 percent." Manager Joe Torre wasn't disappointed Weaver hadn't said anything earlier. "I don't necessarily need for guys to tell me about all your aches and pains," he said. "I think when it comes time that it starts affecting your performance, that's when you want to know." Weaver said he had yet to work out a plan with team trainer Stan Conte, who was in Arizona tending to Manny Ramirez on Tuesday, but expected to avoid cardio and other activities that affected his knee. Weaver felt 15 days would be enough time to recover and said there was no one moment when he first started to feel the pain. He also acknowledged the possibility that his age had something to do with the injury. The 27-year-old Troncoso was optioned on July 3 after he went 1-2 with a 5.15 ERA in 39 appearances. The right-hander had a 2.72 ERA last season and a 3.46 ERA this April but struggled after that. He said he worked on his sinker and keeping his left shoulder square to the plate with the Isotopes. Troncoso struck out three in two perfect innings in his last Triple-A outing Saturday. He had a 6.91 ERA in 14 1/3 innings. "He's OK," Torre said. "Inconsistent. You know, we'll see. He gives us a guy that can throw a couple innings."
Manny's rehab going slower than hoped
LOS ANGELES -- Instead of Manny Ramirez visiting Dodger Stadium as was expected on Tuesday, team trainer Stan Conte flew to him in Arizona as Ramirez works through a setback.Ramirez has been on the disabled list with a right calf strain since July 20 and is still experiencing discomfort. He's working out at the team's Spring Training complex in Glendale. "Until we get him on the field and playing in a rehab game, it's really tough to really plan on getting him back at this point in time," Dodgers manager Joe Torre said. "I think it's going to be probably a couple weeks if what Stan says [is right], and this could change depending on how comfortable he is." Since a 50-game suspension for violating MLB's drug program last season, Torre admitted Ramirez had lost some swagger, but the left fielder's .317 average, eight homers and 39 RBIs in 186 at-bats still represent an upgrade. The setback's news came the same day that Rafael Furcal, the team's best hitter this season, missed early work to get an MRI on his back. On a six-game losing streak, the Dodgers' offense has been desperate for a spark, but has instead received the opposite. "It's frustrating, of course. It's disappointing because you want his bat in the lineup," Torre said of Ramirez. Scott Podsednik, acquired less than a week ago, will continue as the everyday left fielder. Reed Johnson, on the DL with a lumbar strain, was to DH in his second rehab game at Triple-A Albuquerque on Tuesday night.
Dodgers no closer to signing top pick
LOS ANGELES -- There haven't been any conversations between the Dodgers and first-round Draft pick Zach Lee since shortly after Lee was selected, assistant general manager of scouting Logan White said on Tuesday.Lee, a 6-foot-4, 195-pound right-handed pitcher from Texas, was considered to be a difficult sign going into the Draft because of a commitment to play quarterback at Louisiana State and reported bonus demands in excess of $3 million. A day after the Dodgers took Lee at No. 28 overall in June, LSU issued a statement reaffirming Lee's desire to play college football. "We had get-to-know-you dialogues when we first drafted him, and that's it," White said. "... He likes football, he likes baseball. He's a good kid." White took criticism after making the pick -- criticism he said he expected, because the Dodgers were perceived to be making a selection they knew they couldn't sign in an attempt to save money. The Dodgers must reach an agreement with Lee by Aug. 16 or they would forfeit the pick in return for a No. 29 selection in next year's Draft on top of their regular pick determined by their final record this season. White said Lee was already working out with LSU but did not say what conversations, if any, he expected to have with the 18-year-old by the deadline. "If we don't sign him, I promise you it's not because we couldn't afford him," White said. If Lee doesn't sign, White said the money should be there to sign both first-round picks the Dodgers would have next year. The club has signed eight of its top 10 picks this year, with sixth-rounder Kevin Gausman, another right-hander committed to LSU football, the other holdout. White said whether Lee signed wouldn't affect whether Gausman or anyone else signed. "Nothing to do with it," White said of Lee. "He's totally separate." White said he was confident he could net Southern Cal's Joc Pederson (11th round), junior college pitcher Jake Eliopoulos (15th) and Wichita State baseball recruit Scott Schebler (26th round) before the deadline. Eliopoulos was a second-round pick of the Blue Jays in 2009 and did not sign.
Evan Drellich is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.