5/4/2014 1:34 A.M. ET
Crawford frustrated with prolonged slump
By Ken Gurnick / MLB.com
MIAMI -- Mired in a 4-for-45 slump, Carl Crawford was out of the Dodgers' lineup Saturday night. But with five outfielders for three spots, it's hard to tell when somebody gets benched, even with the .185 batting average he was sporting entering Saturday.
"I still feel Carl's a big part of this club," manager Don Mattingly said before the Dodgers' 9-7 win over the Marlins, in which Crawford entered the game in the 10th inning and delivered a two-run, game-winning homer in the 11th.
"I'm not giving up on anyone. Just because he's not in the lineup doesn't mean I've changed my thinking. He's done it once, he can do it again. Yasiel [Puig] has taken off and said, I'm the right fielder. I can't say anyone else has done that. Carl has struggled, but he's still in our plans."
A four-time All-Star, Crawford was left off the All-Star ballot. But he was hitting .306 through the first nine games of the season. Then he sat out two games because of a sore side muscle and hasn't been the same.
"That was the turning point," Crawford said. "I had that side tweak and I really regret doing that. From that moment on it's [been] downhill. Lesson learned. I'm not blaming nobody for nothing. I've got to get back in the groove."
Crawford said he is healthy and believes he's been swinging at good pitches and making contact, but is hitting into bad luck.
"It's frustrating," he said. "I've had slumps, but nothing like this. I have to dig real deep, no other choices."
On Friday night, Mattingly suggested that Crawford might be pressing to prove he belongs in the lineup.
"I ain't pressing. I pressed in Boston, I know what that looks like," he said. "I'm just not getting results."
LA to recall Fife, option Dominguez
MIAMI -- Stephen Fife will be the starting pitcher for the Dodgers in the series finale Sunday against the Marlins, manager Don Mattingly confirmed after Saturday's game.
Fife will be recalled from Triple-A Albuquerque, and Jose Dominguez will be optioned back to Albuquerque. It is the fourth time Dominguez has been optioned this year. The moves will take effect on Sunday.
It will be Fife's 2014 debut for the Dodgers, although he's started a total of 15 games for them over the previous two seasons. He is starting in place of Hyun-Jin Ryu, who was placed on the disabled list Friday with left shoulder blade inflammation.
Fife is 1-2 with a 7.08 ERA for Triple-A Albuquerque with 31 hits allowed in 20 1/3 innings, but no home runs.
Chad Billingsley has resumed playing catch from 60 feet after being shut down for two weeks with a setback in his recovery from Tommy John surgery.
Catcher A.J. Ellis has resumed running and said he was able to run the bases at moderate speed as he heals from left knee surgery. Originally believed to be ahead of his original four to six week schedule to return, Ellis said there is no timetable to start a rehab assignment. He caught Kershaw's bullpen session, but has said all along that running is his last hurdle.
Ken Gurnick is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.