4/21/2014 9:04 P.M. ET
Figgins to Triple-A as LA calls up Dominguez
By Ken Gurnick / MLB.com
LOS ANGELES -- Despite five off-days in the last three weeks, a worn-down bullpen resulted in the Dodgers optioning veteran utility man Chone Figgins to Triple-A Albuquerque to make room for the recall of reliever Jose Dominguez.
Manager Don Mattingly said the absence of innings-eater Clayton Kershaw, effective but short starts from Josh Beckett and Paul Maholm and four extra-inning games in the last 11 combined to leave the Dodgers walking "a little bit of a tightrope" with bullpen usage.
For example, closer Kenley Jansen wasn't playing catch with the other relievers before batting practice on Monday. Mattingly wouldn't say if Jansen was off-limits in the club's series opener against the Phillies after striking out the side while saving Sunday's 4-1 win over Arizona. Jansen is on pace to make 102 appearances this year.
"We're trying to regulate it and get things squared up," Mattingly said. "We hope it's a temporary thing."
Mattingly said the team will go with 13 pitchers at least through this week and possibly for the Interleague series next week in Minnesota that will involve designated hitters.
Figgins signed an agreement in Spring Training saying he'd accept an assignment to the Minor Leagues within 45 days, otherwise he would have had the option to become a free agent. He was almost optioned last week when the Dodgers instead optioned left-handed reliever Paco Rodriguez to make room for righty setup man Brian Wilson. Rodriguez must remain in the Minor Leagues for at least 10 days unless he replaces an injured player.
The chance for Figgins to play regularly for a few games with the Isotopes, after sitting out the 2013 season, "I don't think is horrible," Mattingly said.
Dominguez got the call, Mattingly said, because he's durable enough to rebound for back-to-back appearances, even though he throws harder than any other Dodgers pitcher.
"He has a younger, fresher arm," Mattingly said of the Dodgers' 11th-ranked prospect.
This is already Dominguez's third stint this season with the Dodgers this season. Figgins made nine appearances as a pinch-hitter, going 1-for-6 with three walks.
Kershaw on pace to start in Minors on Friday
LOS ANGELES -- Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw will throw a bullpen session on Tuesday that will set him up to begin a Minor League rehab assignment Friday.
Kershaw said he came out of his Sunday simulated game feeling fine. He's been on the disabled list since March 23 with a strained teres major muscle.
Kershaw made 50 pitches on Sunday, which manager Don Mattingly called "basically a start. That's a game, and he bounced out good."
Even if Kershaw extends into the 70-pitch neighborhood in the Minor Leagues on Friday, the club is likely to encourage him to make a second rehab start. Kershaw is eager to return, but even with a second outing, he could rejoin the Dodgers' rotation in Washington at the end of the upcoming trip.
Dodgers name training room after Dr. Jobe
LOS ANGELES -- The Dodgers on Monday dedicated and officially named the home clubhouse training room at Dodger Stadium after longtime team doctor and sports medicine pioneer Frank Jobe, who died last month.
Club president Stan Kasten made a presentation to Jobe's widow, Beverly, and their three sons threw out first pitches.
Jobe served the organization for 50 years and performed the ground-breaking elbow ligament transplant on former Major League pitcher Tommy John, who also participated in the ceremonies. A framed grouping of photos of Jobe, John and a copy of John's X-ray will be placed in the training room.
Ken Gurnick is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.