Dodgers opening day roster finalized: Hanley Ramirez, Chad Billingsley, Ted Lilly, Scott Elbert to DL

Rob Tringali

The Dodgers on Sunday finalized their opening day roster, including recalling Justin Sellers, who is expected to start at shortstop in the absence of Hanley Ramirez.

The Dodgers on Sunday finalized their opening day roster with five transactions, all expected. They recalled infielder Justin Sellers from minor league camp, and placed four players on the disabled list: Hanley Ramirez, Chad Billingsley, Ted Lilly, and Scott Elbert.

Billingsley was placed on the DL with a right index finger contusion, retroactive to Mar. 22. The earliest he could be activated is Apr. 6, though the Dodgers don't technically need a fifth starter until Apr. 13. Billingsley didn't pitch in a major league game in spring training after Mar. 7. He was unable to throw a curve ball for about 12 days after getting hit by a pitch in the right index finger during a bunting drill. Billingsley has resumed throwing curves, and did so in a bullpen session on Mar. 25 and a six-inning start in a minor league game on Mar. 29.

Lilly was placed on the DL after recovering from left shoulder labrum surgery, retroactive to Mar. 29. Lilly had a rough camp in that he was never able to build up innings. He missed two starts with the flu and had another shortened by rain. Lilly was reluctant to go on the disabled list as recently as Wednesday, but apparently changed his mind.

"I know we've been concerned for a little while now with him. We talked with medical to see if there is anything going on. Teddy has just never caught up. He's been sick, hasn't had a chance to build up arm strength like everybody else," manager Don Mattingly said Thursday. "We're trying to do what's right for everybody."

Ramirez had surgery to repair a torn ligament in his right thumb on Mar. 22, an injury suffered in the final game of the World Baseball Classic. His expected return to the Dodgers was eight weeks, which would be May 17.

Elbert was on the disabled list twice after the All-Star break in 2012 with left elbow inflammation, then had a pair of arthroscopic surgeries on his elbow, on Sep. 19 and Jan. 23. His original expected return date was around the first of May, but after experiencing more discomfort in his elbow during spring training he was shut down again. Elbert had an injection of platelet-rich plasma into his left elbow on Mar. 25, and isn't expected back until late May at the absolute earliest.

Sellers was optioned to minor league camp on Mar. 19, but since he was recalled within 20 days of that optional assignment it is essentially nullified.

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