Padilla Not Expected Back Until June

Vicente Padilla, who last pitched April 22, is not expected back before June, according to manager Joe Torre.  Padilla still hasn't been cleared to throw.  "He's feeling better, but not having thrown for a while, I don't see him helping us this month," Torre said, "When you have a starter who hasn't pitched, there's a lot of work to do to get back on the mound at this level."

Other notes from Torre's pregame media session:

  • Thursday's starter still hasn't been decided, but the decision will likely be made today.  It could be John Ely or Carlos Monasterios, and Charlie Haeger hasn't yet been totally ruled out of the mix either. 
  • On James McDonald: "I'm not sure which way he'd best serve us, as a starter or reliever"
  • Manny Ramirez will begin a rehabilitation assignment with Class A Inland Empire on Tuesday, in Lake Elsinore.  His rehab assignment will be for "a couple of games," and he is expected to be activated Saturday, the first day he is eligible.
  • Jeff Weaver will also be in Lake Elsinore Tuesday, starting the game on his rehab assignment, and will throw 40-45 pitches.  Weaver will resume his situational relief role with the Dodgers upon being activated Friday
  • Rafael Furcal is completely unavailable today, and there is a possibility he could be placed on the disabled list.  "He was feeling better every day, but he sort of stalled yesterday.  He didn't get worse, but just didn't continue to get better," said Torre.  Furcal will work out Monday to determine his availability.  Furcal last played on April 27, so if he is placed on the disabled list he would be ineligible to play until May 14 (the Dodgers are off on May 13)
  • If Furcal is placed on the disabled list, Torre said the club won't likely carry 13 pitchers as it leaves a short bench.  Chin-Lung Hu is the favorite to be called up to replace Furcal, over Nick Green, because Hu is already on the 40-man roster.
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