The Dodgers received some bad news on injured second baseman Mark Ellis, who was placed on the disabled list earlier Saturday with what was termed a lower left leg injury. Ellis had to have urgent surgery on his lower leg on Saturday, a fasciotomy, a procedure to relieve pressure in the leg to improve circulation.
Ellis was hit on the side of his leg Friday night on a slide by Tyler Greene at second base. Pressure built in Ellis's left leg overnight and he was sent to the hospital by the Dodgers on Saturday.
"You have several compartments in the lower leg. When you have trauma to that area, blood trauma, fluids, tissue, and everything swells up. You have to open up that fascia to release that pressure," Dodgers trainer Sue Falsone explained after the game.
Ellis will be hospitalized until Tuesday, and will miss at least six weeks.
"As we go, we're going to do more exams on his knee," Falsone said. "What we had to do today was urgent so we're just focused on the lower leg right now."
The Dodgers have almost lost as many players this season to the disabled list (11) than they have lost actual games (13).
"I think he's a great player. The more you see him play, the better he is," manager Don Mattingly said of Ellis before the game. "He's a tough guy to replace."
We'll find out just how tough Ellis is to replace soon enough. For now they will use a combination of Elian Herrera, Adam Kennedy, and Justin Sellers, and Ivan De Jesus to start at second base, third base, and shortstop, with Jerry Hairston Jr. joining the mix in a few days when he returns from the disabled list.
Ellis has started 33 of the Dodgers' 40 games, batting second in the order each time, and was hitting .273/.373/.364 with 27 runs scored on the season. Ellis was hitting .309/.397/.455 with two home runs and 11 runs scored in 15 games in May.
In a bit of fortuitous timing, infielder Aaron Miles played his first game for Triple A Albuquerque on Saturday night, starting at second base. Miles signed a minor league contract with the Dodgers on May 11, and spent about a week in extended spring training in Arizona before reporting to the Isotopes.
Since the Dodgers signed Miles, they have lost their starting third baseman (Juan Uribe) and their starting second baseman (Ellis) to the disabled list. Ellis will be out for a while, and Uribe finds out his fate on Sunday as he meets with a hand specialist regarding his left wrist injury.
Miles started 61 games at second base and 49 games at third base for the Dodgers last season.