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Vicente Padilla Happy To Be A Dodger, & Other Friday Notes

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With 35 of the 36 pitchers and catchers in camp and accounted for -- you can read more on the only player absent, Ronald Belisario, here, here, or here -- thoughts in Glendale, Arizona turn to the other 24 players invited to big league camp. Position players aren't scheduled to report to Camelback Ranch until Monday, but several are already in camp.

Roster locks Rafael Furcal, James Loney, Matt Kemp, Andre Ethier , Jamey Carroll, Tony Gwynn Jr., Marcus Thames, and Jay Gibbons are joined in camp by non-roster invitees Gabe Kapler, Russ Mitchell, Jamie Hoffmann, Trayvon Robinson, and Dee Gordon. Casey Blake, (real) wrestling fan, plans to report to camp on Sunday. He and his wife had their fifth child, a baby girl, this morning.

Yesterday there were a couple of profiles on Vicente Padilla, by both Ken Gurnick of MLB.com and Dylan Hernandez of the LA Times. The plan is for Padilla to get work early in spring training as a starter, but then move into a relief role, where he will likely begin the season. Padilla, who has a boatload of contract incentives whether he starts or relieves, seems fine with either role. I enjoyed this excerpt from Hernandez:

As a free agent this winter, Padilla said he was approached by other clubs but never pursued those opportunities. He wanted to return to the organization that took a chance on him late in the 2009 season, when it recovered the reputed bad boy from the scrap heap and resurrected his career.

"I knew what the situation was," he said. "They told me I could start or I could relieve, but that was fine with me. I'm comfortable here."

Notes

  • Dana Eveland on Thursday had the first injury of spring training for the Dodgers, as he suffered what is being termed a significant left hamstring strain during running drills on the first day of workouts. Don Mattingly said Eveland was expected to miss "weeks, not days.".
  • Chad Billingsley threw a bullpen session today, with visual evidence here. Billingsley was a guest on MLB Network Radio with Jim Bowden today, and Billingsley said he threw about 40 pitches in today's session, working on his complete repertoire. The other four starters, and Padilla, were among the pitchers who threw a bullpen session on Thursday.
  • The only pitcher besides Eveland who hasn't yet thrown a bullpen session is Hong-Chih Kuo, who is on a separate throwing program.
  • Dodger birthdays today include Jamey Carroll, who turned 37, and Manny Mota, who turned 73. Both men celebrated in camp today.
  • Scioscia14 has a nice fan post up summarizing his thoughts from Camelback Ranch.
  • Jon Weisman on Dodger Thoughts says the success of the right-handed Lance Cormier against left-handed batters in recent years might make the non-roster invitee a darkhorse for a bullpen spot.
  • Manny Ramirez is motivated in Tampa Bay, writes "Steve Sax" of Sons of Steve Garvey