4/10/2014 2:39 P.M. ET
Inbox: Is everything OK with Jansen?
Beat reporter Ken Gurnick answers Dodgers fans' questions
By Ken Gurnick / MLB.com
What's wrong with Kenley Jansen?
-- Greg G., La Habra, Calif.
Based on the radar gun, nothing is wrong with Jansen's arm, so that's the good news. He's throwing three to five mph harder than a year ago. Maybe that is too hard for Jansen's late-breaking cutter to cut late?
The easy explanation for Jansen hitting more bats is because he had fewer Spring Training outings than normal. That has already been offered as a logical explanation for the injury to Clayton Kershaw, and the lack of arm strength for Brian Wilson.
Maybe it's just a coincidence, and of course it's a small sample size, but some of the best starts to the season have been turned in by Dodgers left behind in Arizona when the club was in Australia -- Carl Crawford, Dan Haren and Brandon League.
Any chance we see a Zach Lee start this month?
-- Jose M., Dallas
With enough injuries, anything is possible, but it's not something management wants.
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Lee isn't on the 40-man roster. Generally, it wouldn't make sense moving somebody off the 40-man roster to make room for a spot starter. If the Dodgers were calling him up permanently, that's another story -- a Kershaw situation from years ago.
And although management has been impressed with Lee's steady progress, he only just begun his first season at Triple-A, and Don Mattingly hinted this week that Lee can use more seasoning.
Will Dee Gordon win the everyday job at second base instead of just a platoon role?
-- Katie J., Las Vegas, Ariz.
If Gordon keeps hitting .400 against lefties (he's 2-for-5), sure. Beginning the season in a starting platoon is quite an advancement from starting Spring Training looking for a roster spot.
Gordon came to camp ready physically and mentally to make the transition from shortstop to second base. He was lucky enough to get a load of playing time despite the reduced schedule of exhibition games. Not only did the decision makers get a good look, but Gordon had a normal workload in an abnormal camp, so he was really ready when the season started.
Gordon still is a little rough at times defensively, but from second base, he has more time to overcome fumbles. He's a disruptor offensively, coming in handy at the top of the order with Yasiel Puig's absences.
What happened to the Dodgers' female trainer?
-- Dale D., Long Beach, Calif.
Sue Falsone, the first female trainer in the history of the major sports, resigned and is no longer affiliated with the club. Stan Conte, who preceded her as head trainer and became vice president of medical services, has resumed duties as head trainer.
What is the purpose of the colored squares being held up near the dugout between innings?
-- Rob G., Los Angeles
They are signals to the umpires from the broadcasting network indicating when the game can resume without being missed by the broadcast.
Will it take the Dodgers longer to teach Puig not to slide headfirst into first base than it has to hit the cutoff man?
-- Shawn H., Miami
Apparently. But Josh Hamilton hasn't learned it yet, either. Players keep doing it and risking unnecessary injury, even though there are really two main purposes to slide.
The main reason is to stop. The other reason is to avoid a tag. Diving into first base makes no sense, because the batter is allowed to run through it at full speed and doesn't need to stop. In Puig's case, there was no tag to avoid. It's another box on the list he still needs to check.
Ken Gurnick is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.