Dodgers claim Barajas from Mets
Catcher will be added to roster Tuesday in Milwaukee
LOS ANGELES -- Lacking too much offense without the injured Russell Martin, the Dodgers made a move to bring in a veteran catcher for the stretch run on Sunday.
Los Angeles claimed Rod Barajas of the Mets off waivers and will add the 34-year-old to the roster officially on Tuesday in Milwaukee. A.J. Ellis, Sunday's starter at Dodger Stadium against the Reds, will be optioned to Triple-A Albuquerque until Major League rosters expand in September, when he will likely return.
In his 12th season, Barajas had played in 74 games for the Mets this year, including 67 starts. He hit .225 with 12 homers, 11 doubles and 34 RBIs in 249 at-bats in his first season in New York, bringing a power threat to a position where the Dodgers essentially had none.
When Martin was lost for the season with a labral tear in his right hip on Aug. 4, the Dodgers turned to 41-year-old Brad Ausmus, who had missed the first half of the season because of back surgery, and the 29-year-old Ellis, who had played 10 games in the Majors before this season. They hit a combined .183 with no home runs and 11 RBIs in 128 at-bats.
"It's a move that's going to make us better, especially offensively," Ellis said. "We both did a really good job in terms of handling the staff. I think we've done a good job preparing and calling games. The problem's been offense."
"At this point in time we need that third catcher," manager Joe Torre said. "We were hard pressed to find another catcher to bring up. We'll catch [Barajas], he'll share with Ausmus and probably do most of the catching."
LA scraps rehab stint, activates Weaver
LOS ANGELES -- A day after announcing a planned rehab stint for Jeff Weaver, the Dodgers activated the reliever Sunday morning and moved Travis Schlichting to the 15-day disabled list.
Schlichting has soreness in his right shoulder and is scheduled to receive an MRI on Monday. Schlichting said he's been pitching with what he believes is tendinitis in the shoulder all season but had previously been unaffected by it and felt no need to mention the condition to the team.
On Saturday, when Schlichting allowed two runs and recorded two outs on 16 pitches in his only appearance since being recalled on Aug. 20, something was different.
"Usually once I get loose, I don't feel anything," Schlichting said. "I didn't want to make a big deal out of it, until last night. Usually, once I'm in the game, my adrenaline's going. ... Last night it was almost hurting every pitch."
Weaver, who turned 34 Sunday, has been out since Aug. 3 because of tendinitis in his left knee. He was to make two rehab appearances for Class A Inland Empire this week, but those were not considered necessary for him to return.
Weaver said he has felt ready to go for some time.
"Absolutely. I'd say since probably two bullpens ago, the last simulated game went really good [on Wednesday]," he said. "I'm ready to go and hopefully I hold up the rest of the way."
Weaver is 5-1 with a 5.35 ERA in 37 innings this season. Schlichting is 1-0 with a 3.57 ERA in 22 2/3 innings.
Furcal waits for full effect of cortisone shot
LOS ANGELES -- The cortisone shot Rafael Furcal received to his lower back had yet to take full effect on Sunday morning, one day after Furcal received the shot. The Dodgers shortstop has missed nearly all of August because of the back strain.
"I feel the pain," Furcal said. "The shot doesn't work right away; it takes awhile. We'll see tomorrow ... but I feel a little bit better."
Furcal also received a second MRI on Saturday, which showed no difference from the first. A bone scan earlier in the week came back as desired as well.
Furcal is scheduled to travel to the team's Spring Training complex in Arizona on Monday to continue his rehab work when he is able. He would not resume baseball activities immediately.
Torre says callups can create 'unfair' edge
LOS ANGELES -- The Dodgers will be able to fill a few needs when rosters expand on Sept. 1, allowing teams to use anyone on their 40-man roster.
Los Angeles will be able to bring up an extra infielder, with only Ronnie Belliard on the bench currently, and they'll be able to bring back catcher A.J. Ellis, who is to be optioned to Triple-A Albuquerque on Tuesday.
The Dodgers likely won't add too many players, and likely none of them will make a huge impact. But some teams could end up with a significant boost because of the roster expansion, and Dodgers manager Joe Torre isn't a fan of the idea.
"I think it's unfair," Torre said. "There are some clubs that will bring up a handful, three or four, I think we all do that. And then there are other clubs ... and you can understand why they're doing it. They're not doing it to try to make your job tougher; they're trying to make some decisions in their organization."
Torre said he would support some sort of cap on eligibility per game, or anything that makes roster expansion fairer for all teams.
"It's very tough playing against those teams, especially in our league where part of it is you're trying to run your opposition out of players," Torre said. "Basically, people get knocked out of the pennant race by people who have played Double-A ball and maybe four at-bats in the big leagues."
Evan Drellich is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.