03/31/2013 1:18 AM ET
Crawford's bat appears ready for the season
By Austin Laymance / MLB.com
ANAHEIM -- Dodgers outfielder Carl Crawford continues to build up strength in his throwing arm, but he's not been limited at the plate while finishing his recovery from last year's Tommy John surgery.
Crawford was hitting .370 in Spring Training, entering Saturday's Freeway Series finale against the Angels. He had hit safely in seven of his nine exhibition games, recording multiple hits three times.
"I think his timing is pretty good at the plate," manager Don Mattingly said.
Crawford's bat is not a concern for the Dodgers, but his left elbow is not fully recovered from his August surgery.
"He's going to keep getting stronger with his throwing, where we get more and more comfortable with him just letting it go," Mattingly said. "We're not seeing him hesitate about throwing. He's not having pain throwing. It's just a matter of continuing to build a guy who is coming off Tommy John. It's not bothering his hitting; he can hit and do all those things."
Crawford had a setback early in Spring Training and had to be shut down for a week, but that did not change his effectiveness at the plate. Crawford got extra at-bats in the Minor Leagues and took advantage.
"For a guy that we had to shut down for seven days, it looked like we were really going to be behind," Mattingly said. "He's really spent the time going to the Minor Leagues [well]. He put some energy into his at-bats, you could tell."
Dodgers give Sellers the nod at shortstop
ANAHEIM -- Justin Sellers, who had been reassigned to Minor League camp before Hanley Ramirez tore a ligament in his right thumb, will likely be the Dodgers' Opening Day shortstop.
Manager Don Mattingly announced that the 27-year-old will make the team after the Dodgers made several roster moves following Saturday night's 2-1 Freeway Series loss to the Angels, L.A.'s final game of Spring Training. The club reassigned right-handers Kevin Gregg and Peter Moylan, utility man Alfredo Amezaga and catcher Matt Wallach to Minor League camp.
Gregg impressed the Dodgers with a strong Spring Training and could join the team at a later date.
"He pitched well, there's no doubt," general manager Ned Colletti said. "It's a tough one. You only have so many spots on your team. He did nothing to discourage us. We'll see where it goes."
That means left-handers Paco Rodriguez and Chris Capuano will make the club as relievers. Mattingly said Rodriguez projects as a situational lefty. Capuano, primarily a starter in eight previous Major League seasons, can fill multiple roles.
"[Capuano] gives us different things," Mattingly said. "He can be a multiple-inning guy. He can get lefties out. He's pitched out of the 'pen before. He gives us some length as far as right now. If someone gets banged up early, you can pull that trigger pretty quick with him."
In addition, the Dodgers optioned outfielder Alex Castellanos, right-hander Stephen Fife, utility man Elian Herrera and right-hander Josh Wall to Minor League camp.
The Dodgers have 28 players remaining and will make additional moves by Sunday's noon PT deadline to set the 25-man Opening Day roster.
Puig's breakout spring nets top-rookie honors
ANAHEIM -- The Dodgers' coaching staff voted Yasiel Puig the 2013 Jim and Dearie Mulvey Award winner as the top rookie at Spring Training.
Puig, 22, hit a team-best .517 with an .828 slugging percentage in 27 games. He hit three homers with five doubles, two triples and 11 RBIs. The outfielder scored 16 runs and stole four bases in five attempts.
Dodgers manager Don Mattingly knows Puig, who is scheduled to begin the season with Double-A Chattanooga, would have preferred a roster spot to the yearly honor.
"It's an award that's really nice for a guy," manager Don Mattingly said before Saturday's Freeway Series exhibition finale against the Angels. "But when you get sent down and then you get the award later, it's probably not that great of an award. But I'm sure as he looks back on it, he'll enjoy it."
Nathan Eovaldi won the award in 2012. Other notable Dodgers to win the award include: Mike Piazza (1992, '93), Eric Karros (1991), Orel Hershiser (1983), Mike Marshall (1982), Fernando Valenzuela (1981), Pedro Guerrero (1979), Rick Sutcliffe (1977) and Steve Yaeger (1972).
Austin Laymance is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.