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08/18/11 3:45 PM ET

Dodgers to continue limiting Eovaldi's innings

MILWAUKEE -- The Dodgers are continuing with their plan to limit the innings of rookie Nathan Eovaldi, despite the right-hander bursting into the Major Leagues with three consecutive strong starts.

Manager Don Mattingly said on Thursday that Eovaldi would make "a couple more starts" before moving to the bullpen.

"Well, we're not going to shut him down completely," Mattingly said. "We really want him to finish up. We'll probably pitch him out of the bullpen."

In three starts, Eovaldi is 1-1 with a 2.12 ERA, giving up only 11 hits and nine walks in 17 innings.

"He's a young guy with a bright future," Mattingly said.

Eovaldi also pitched 103 innings for Chattanooga in the Double-A Southern League. Last year, he pitched 98 1/3 innings for three Dodgers Minor League teams.

"You want to increase their innings each year by a percentage," Mattingly said.

Blake to miss games as shoulder heals

MILWAUKEE -- Casey Blake will likely miss a couple games while he recovers from a sore right shoulder, manager Don Mattingly said on Thursday.

Blake suffered the injury on Wednesday night while throwing to first base after making a fielding error on a hard grounder.

"It's going to take him a couple days," Mattingly said.

Aaron Miles started at third base in Blake's place on Thursday.

Mattingly insisting that players keep pressure on

MILWAUKEE -- After losing the first three games of the four-game series to the Brewers, manager Don Mattingly acknowledged on Wednesday night that his team is unlikely to make the playoffs this year.

Going into Thursday's game with the Brewers, the Dodgers were 55-67 and in fourth place, 13 1/2 games behind Arizona in the National League West.

"Obviously we're not going to concede," Mattingly said on Thursday when asked to expound upon his comments from the previous night. "I know it's possible, and I'm probably the most optimistic guy in terms of what I believe can happen. But the situation is that we're going to be playing a young kid at short no matter who it is.

"We're going to get some kids up in September that we're going to take a look at," he said. "We're trying to make some decisions for next year. There will be some guys playing that maybe wouldn't be playing if we were three, four, five, six back. We have to be realistic as an organization."

Mattingly said that he would continue to insist that his team plays hard.

"I don't think there can be any kind of give in terms of how we play," he said. "Our preparation, the way we play, the energy with which we play in, there can be no give in with that. That's something for me that can never be compromised. I don't care who's out there, there is an expectation of effort."

Sellers bats second in lineup for first time

MILWAUKEE -- Justin Sellers started again at shortstop for the Dodgers on Thursday, but was inserted into the second spot in the batting order for the first time.

Manager Don Mattingly said that he thought Sellers could be a good utility player for the Dodgers, and could even play the outfield on occasion.

"He's doing a very nice job, honestly," Mattingly said. "We had a good feel about what type of personality we were getting, what type of mentality he brings."

Mattingly said that he moved Sellers from eighth in the order to second because hitting eighth is more difficult. Second baseman Jamey Carroll was batting eighth on Thursday.

"Eighth is a tough spot, especially for a young guy," he said. "Are they going to pitch to you or not? Are they going to come after you or not? Jamey has a much better feel for it. He's better off in the eighth spot."

Sellers is batting .188 in five games.

Joe DiGiovanni is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.