05/11/2013 1:36 AM ET
Adrian returns to Dodgers' lineup
By Ken Gurnick and Austin Laymance / MLB.com
LOS ANGELES -- Dodgers first baseman Adrian Gonzalez, who exited Wednesday's game after four innings with a mild neck strain, was back in the lineup on Friday.
"We feel like he came out of it pretty good," manager Don Mattingly said before the series opener against the Marlins. "He felt good yesterday when he came in. He didn't go backwards or anything."
Gonzalez did not take batting practice on the field at Dodger Stadium or field ground balls Friday afternoon. Instead, he took swings in the indoor batting cage. Gonzalez used the same routine on Monday and was able to play the entire game.
"He's basically going to try to save his bullets as much as possible," Mattingly said.
Gonzalez suffered a mild strain in his left trapezius muscle at the base of his neck on May 1 when he collided with first-base umpire Tony Randazzo as he turned to chase a double down the line by Rockies slugger Carlos Gonzalez.
Gonzalez aggravated the injury Wednesday in the top of the fourth inning when he attempted to catch a foul popup by D-backs catcher Wil Nieves and dove awkwardly.
Mattingly said Friday he was confident Gonzalez could avoid a stint on the disabled list. The injury does not affect the slugger at the plate, but limits his movement in the field and when he runs.
"I think once they got the MRI and he didn't have any damage, it was just basically a strain and he was able to play with it," Mattingly said. "Obviously, we've seen him swing the bat pretty well. So it's not like something that's keeping him from doing a lot of things. We feel like he's going to get better and better."
Van Slyke called up; Herrera optioned
LOS ANGELES -- Still searching for a power bat off the bench, the Dodgers promoted Scott Van Slyke from Triple-A Albuquerque on Friday.
In a corresponding roster move, utility man Elian Herrera was optioned to Albuquerque. The Dodgers transferred right-hander Chad Billingsley to the 60-day disabled list to clear room for Van Slyke on the 40-man roster.
In 34 games with the Isotopes, Van Slyke hit .397 with nine homers, 30 RBIs and a .503 on-base percentage. He appeared in 27 games with the Dodgers in 2012, going 9-for-54 (.167) with two homers and seven RBIs. Van Slyke projects as a backup corner outfielder and first baseman.
"Obviously, at this point, you look for offense," manager Don Mattingly said before Friday night's game against the Marlins. "But he's the right mixture that we need. We need a guy that can play first, both outfield positions at the corners and be right-handed. We're looking for more than we've gotten so far, as much as anything."
Herrera was recalled on Tuesday and started Wednesday against the D-backs, going 1-for-3.
The Dodgers didn't promote Van Slyke earlier this week because he had not played the outfield in the Minors this season, and the club felt Herrera was a better fit to replace injured utility man Jerry Hairston. Van Slyke appeared in the outfield the past three games with the Isotopes.
Van Slyke also gives the Dodgers protection at first base if Adrian Gonzalez aggravates his mild neck strain again, as he did Wednesday when he left the game after four innings.
Billingsley had Tommy John surgery on April 24 and is out for the season.
Lefty Elbert throws perfect inning in rehab with Class A
LAKE ELSINORE, Calif. -- Scott Elbert, the "other" Dodgers pitcher on a rehab assignment with Class A Rancho Cucamonga, pitched a perfect seventh inning Friday night and got the win in his first game appearance since two elbow operations.
The left-handed Elbert will pitch another inning Monday and might follow that with an appearance at Triple-A Albuquerque, but he's not far away from returning to the Dodgers' bullpen.
"I'm pretty excited," said Elbert, who needed only seven pitches to record two strikeouts and a groundout. "It's a good feeling. It's been a long time. I feel good. I don't feel anything."
Elbert was on a 25-pitch limit, so he went to the bullpen after his inning and threw another 18 pitches to get in his work. The Quakes, who trailed by five runs at one point, took the lead while Elbert was the pitcher of record.
"If I can do what I did tonight, I can help them out [in Los Angeles]," said Elbert. "I almost feel I'm back to my normal self completely."
Elbert's 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.
Because Elbert is out of options, he can't be sent to the Minor Leagues for any reason other than a rehab assignment without the risk of another club claiming him.
Mother's Day meets Viva Los Dodgers
LOS ANGELES -- The Dodgers will combine Sunday celebrations for Mother's Day and Viva Los Dodgers at Dodger Stadium, while the team hosts the Marlins at 1:10 p.m. PT.
The first 40,000 fans will receive a Mother's Day tote bag presented by Murad skincare. Dodgers mothers and wives will be on hand, and there will also be a postgame Walk Around the Park on the warning track after the game.
Grammy award-winning singer Melissa Manchester will perform the national anthem before the game and "God Bless America" during the seventh-inning stretch.
Sunday also is Viva Los Dodgers, presented by Chevrolet, State Farm and Time Warner Cable, which takes place before the game in Parking Lot 6 beginning at 10:40 a.m. Live music will feature Grammy and Latin Grammy award nominated artists Marion Moreno, former member of norteño group Los Tucanes de Tijuana. Mexican Dubwiser, a producer and DJ from Monterrey, Mexico, will also perform. Dodgers alum Tim Leary will sign autographs for fans starting at 10:40 a.m. through the end of the event.
The Dodgers will also offer additional musical entertainment in the Reserve level plazas located on the first- and third-base sides. Third base side entertainment will be provided by singer, songwriter, California native and nephew of rock legend Carlos Santana, Adam Lasher. First-base side will feature live music by rock cover band The Trip.
Also marking Mother's Day will be the continuation of past tributes that includes the use by players of pink Louisville Slugger bats, pink necklaces and compression sleeves from Phiten, pink batting gloves from Franklin, pink Under Armour cleats and pink EvoShield protective gear.
The Honorary Bat Girl program continues, with Sara Aguilera, a breast cancer patient who founded "Feel Yourself Up" -- a breast cancer awareness organization promoting self-examination.
Fans also can support the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure LA County by purchasing a special priced ticket at www.dodgers.com/thinkpink through the end of the day Saturday and are encouraged to wear pink to the game Sunday. A portion of each ticket purchased through the special link will be donated Komen LA County.
Sunday's Veteran of the Game is U.S. Army Sergeant First Class Debbie Carter of Chicago.
Bike Week rides into Dodger Stadium Saturday
LOS ANGELES -- The road to Dodger Stadium will be full of cyclists on Saturday afternoon.
More than 100 participants will ride from Union Station to the ballpark before Saturday's game against the Marlins, where they will be greeted by Hall of Fame manager Tommy Lasorda. Riders will tour the stadium once they arrive and attend the game.
The event is part of Bike Week Los Angeles and is organized by the Dodgers, C.I.C.L.E., the Eastside Bike Club and Metro.
Fans can purchase tickets to participate in this event by visiting www.dodgers.com/metro.
• Leadoff hitter Carl Crawford was back in the lineup Friday after a tight right hamstring kept him from starting Wednesday's game.
"If it starts to tighten up, we'll get him out of there and go a different route," Mattingly said.
• Left-hander Ted Lilly is scheduled to throw a bullpen session on Saturday. He is on the disabled list with a right rib cage strain and began a throwing program Wednesday.
• Right-hander Stephen Fife has started throwing for the first time since he was placed on the disabled list with right shoulder bursitis on April 26.