Sue Falsone out as Dodgers trainer

Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

The Dodgers head athletic trainer for the last two seasons has left to pursue other career opportunities, Falsone announced on Monday.

No matter how successful a season, some level of year-to-year turnover in personnel is to be expected, and the Dodgers are no different even after getting to within two wins of the World Series. Head athletic trainer Sue Falsone won't return to the Dodgers in 2014, per reports from both Ramona Shelburne of ESPN and Dylan Hernandez of the Los Angeles Times.

The Dodgers had 17 different players spend 25 different stints on the disabled list in 2013, though there is not always clear line of demarcation between training techniques and players getting hurt. Hanley Ramirez, one of six Dodgers with multiple DL stints this season, for one has praised the training staff numerous times for their work in getting him back on the field and ready to play after injuries to his thumb, hamstring, back and ribs in 2013.

But even if Falsone was set to be the scapegoat for the Dodgers' injury woes, that doesn't appear to be the case, at least on the surface. Falsone tweeted, "It is with a heavy heart to say that I will not be returning to the LA Dodgers in order to pursue other opportunities within my career."

Falsone added:

In addition to the last two years as head athletic trainer for the Dodgers — making her the first female head athletic trainer in major professional sports — Falsone was a physical therapist with the Dodgers from 2007-10, and has worked with Athletes Performance Institute in Phoenix for 11 years, as vice president of performance physical therapy and team sports.

In addition to Falsone's departure, Hernandez reports that strength and conditioning Stephen Downey won't return to the major league team. Downey has been with the Dodgers for two years, but before that had similar roles in Triple-A Albuquerque (2009-2011), Class-A Inland Empire (2008) and Class-A Great Lakes (2007).

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