PHOENIX -- Reliever Scott Elbert, who is on the 15-day disabled list, is the latest Dodger to respond favorably to platelet-rich plasma treatment.
After two offseason elbow operations, Elbert experienced a setback midway through Spring Training, received a PRP injection and has rebounded steadily since. He has been throwing hard on flat ground this weekend and could be pitching off a mound in a week or two.
"I'm definitely a lot better, either from the PRP or the shoulder exercises, which also help the elbow because everything is incorporated," said Elbert. "I wasn't able to throw more than 75 feet in Spring Training, but I'm up to 90 feet now and my mechanics are a lot better."
To keep Elbert from throwing across his body, the club has laid out lines on the ground and a rubber home plate whenever he plays catch. He's also reminded to keep his elbow above his shoulder as he throws.
"Something's helping," he said.
Elbert said his two operations were in different locations, one in the back of the elbow, the other slightly higher. The first was to remove scar tissue, the other a microfracture procedure to smooth an irregularity and stimulate cartilage re-growth.
Lilly in limbo after not accepting Minors assignment
PHOENIX -- The Ted Lilly standoff reached Day Two with no resolution.
The Dodgers on Saturday asked Lilly to continue his Minor League rehab assignment with two more starts and he declined. He can't be sent out without his permission and he declared himself healthy and ready to pitch in the Major Leagues.
The club disagrees.
"We laid out a plan and, obviously, he just didn't like the plan," said manager Don Mattingly, who put Chris Capuano in the starting rotation, and not Lilly, to replace the injured Zack Greinke. "From a baseball standpoint, we felt he wasn't quite ready for what we want him to do, to start."
"We laid out a plan and Teddy doesn't want to be part of the plan. It's out of my hands. We didn't feel he was ready to pitch at the Major League level. For me, it's a baseball decision. It's nothing personal in any way, shape or form. We're giving him our baseball thoughts, what we think is best for him and the team."
Lilly began the season on the disabled list. Coming off last year's shoulder surgery, Lilly's Spring Training was disrupted by the flu and a rain-shortened start. Meanwhile, in part because Lilly was physically able to make only eight starts last year, the Dodgers signed free agents Greinke and Hyun-Jin Ryu over the winter to start the year with eight veteran starting pitchers.
Aaron Harang has since been traded and now Greinke will be sidelined for two months after breaking his left collarbone in Thursday night's fracas with the Padres.
The Dodgers can activate Lilly, designate him for assignment, release him or trade him. They can't keep him on the disabled list indefinitely and don't seem to have a role for him.
Mattingly wouldn't go that far, saying using Lilly in relief is a possibility, but the immediate issue is a difference of opinion whether Lilly would be effective in the Major Leagues.
"We don't think he's ready," Mattingly said.
Dodgers to host Robinson's family on Jackie Day
PHOENIX -- The Dodgers, who celebrated Jackie Robinson Day all weekend, will cap it off at Monday night's game against the Padres by hosting Robinson's widow, Rachel Robinson, and her family.
"Jackie's impact on baseball, society and the lives of our children and our children's children is unmatched," said Dodgers partner Magic Johnson. "I'm humbled to celebrate a great Dodger and a better man."
In 1997, under the direction of Commissioner Bud Selig, Robinson's No. 42 was retired across all of Major League Baseball in an unprecedented tribute.
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The Dodgers will also pay tribute to Hall of Fame catcher and three-time National League MVP Award winner Roy Campanella and Dodgers special advisor to the chairman, 1956 NL MVP and Cy Young Award winner Don Newcombe pregame.
The 17-member choir of Johnson's church home, West Angeles Church of God In Christ, will sing the national anthem. Kelley Jakle, the great-granddaughter of Branch Rickey, the Brooklyn Dodgers' general manager who signed Jackie Robinson, will sing "God Bless America." The ceremonial first pitch will be thrown by Harrison Ford, who stars in Warner Bros. Pictures "42" as Rickey. Rachel Robinson will officially start the game with "It's Time for Dodger Baseball!"
The Dodgers also will salute the Tuskegee Airmen during the game Monday night and Warner Bros. Pictures will provide a commemorative statuette of Robinson, Campanella and Newcombe to the first 40,000 attending the game against the Padres.
Dodger Stadium will be decorated with prominently placed 42 logos on the pitching mound, dugout, near the foul pole and baselines. There will also be Jackie Robinson Day jeweled bases and lineup cards and a special tribute video that will be shown in-stadium. The Dodgers' uniformed personnel will all wear number 42.
Monday's Veterans of the Game are two members of the Tuskegee airmen, the first African American military aviators in the U.S. military, Lieutenant Colonel Theodore Lumpkin of Los Angeles and Major Levy Thorn Hill of Virginia.
Johnson will host several celebrities and local government dignitaries at a pregame reception and at Monday's game. Additionally, more than 200 Dodgers fans who purchased a special $42 ticket will attend a Loge Terrace reception with Dodgers alumni Dennis Powell, Derrel Thomas, Kenny Landreaux, "Sweet Lou" Johnson and Al Downing. Johnson will also visit with these fans.
Prior to Monday's game, former Dodger Tommy Davis, Matt Kemp and Sharon Robinson will visit Washington Middle School in Pasadena, Calif., to discuss her new book, "Jackie Robinson: American Hero," and the Breaking Barriers: In Sports, In Life program. Jackie Robinson attended Washington Middle School, then Washington Junior High School, as a young man. The school is participating in a special Breaking Barriers essay contest where one student will be presented with a special gift by Sharon Robinson.
Ken Gurnick is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.