7/24/2014 12:34 A.M. ET
Puig takes extra BP, may return on Friday
By Ken Gurnick / MLB.com
PITTSBURGH -- Dodgers All-Star outfielder Yasiel Puig took extra batting practice Wednesday and could return to the lineup Friday night when the Dodgers open a showdown series in San Francisco.
Puig has missed four starts since being hit on the left hand by a pitch from Joe Kelly in St. Louis on Saturday. Puig came in to pinch-hit in the eighth and drew a walk in Wednesday's 6-1 loss to the Pirates. He stayed in the game and played center field.
Mattingly said he was more optimistic Puig could return to the lineup on Friday than he was for shortstop Hanley Ramirez, who missed his third start since being hit on the left hand by a pitch from Trevor Rosenthal.
Ramirez was limited to indoor work on Wednesday. Mattingly said he wouldn't rule out Ramirez returning Friday night, but it was hard to be optimistic if he still wasn't taking batting practice on Wednesday.
Mattingly said he still didn't expect either player to be placed on the disabled list.
Puig also shagged fly balls in center field, one day after Mattingly said he's thought of moving Puig over from right field. With Puig out, Matt Kemp started in right field, Scott Van Slyke was in center and Miguel Rojas started at shortstop.
Mattingly plans on keeping Beckett in rotation
PITTSBURGH -- The Dodgers haven't announced their starting rotation beyond the weekend series in San Francisco, but manager Don Mattingly said Josh Beckett will remain in it.
Beckett made his shortest start of the season Tuesday night after coming off the disabled list for a hip impingement, labral tear and two cysts. Beckett said the hip condition would not be used as an excuse and he planned to move forward and continue pitching. "We don't have any plans doing anything differently," said Mattingly, who earlier left open the possibility that one pitcher would be skipped or juggled because the Dodgers have days off Thursday and next Monday sandwiched around the Giants series.
Zack Greinke, Clayton Kershaw and Hyun-Jin Ryu are lined up to start the three games against the Giants. On Tuesday night, the Dodgers open a three-game series at home against Atlanta that begins a stretch of 20 consecutive games without a day off.
Beckett allowed four runs on six hits, including three solo home runs, in 3 2/3 innings.
Ken Gurnick is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.