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Dodgers Call Up Luis Cruz, Option Shawn Tolleson

Luis Cruz has reason to smile.
Luis Cruz has reason to smile.

The Dodgers on Monday made a roster move, purchasing the contract of Luis Cruz from Triple A Albuquerque. Reliever Shawn Tolleson was optioned to Triple A Albuqeruque, giving the Dodgers an 11-man pitching staff for the first time all season.

To make room for Cruz on the 40-man roster, the Dodgers transferred pitcher Ted Lilly to the 60-day disabled list. Lilly hasn't pitched since May 23, out with shoulder inflammation. He only recently has been throwing without pain, but hasn't yet thrown off a mound and would need a series of minor league rehab starts before he would be able to return to the Dodgers, which would take him past July 23, the first day he would be eligible to return from the 60-day disabled list.

Cruz was hitting .318/.348/.529 with a Pacific Coast League-leading 31 doubles in 75 games with Triple A Albuquerque. He started 71 games at shortstop for the Isotopes, and started one game each at second base and third base. He also played one game in right field for Albuquerque. Cruz was in the running for the final bench spot on the opening day roster until the final days of spring training, and the Dodgers had him play all over the infield as well as outfield during the exhibition season.

Cruz appeared in the majors in parts of three seasons, in 2008 and 2009 with the Pittsburgh Pirates and in 2010 with the Milwaukee Brewers. In 56 major league games and 169 plate appearances, Cruz hit .221/.275/.260 with four doubles and a triple.

Tolleson, the 2011 organizational minor league pitcher of the year, was promoted to the Dodgers on June 4, completing a rapid rise through four minor league levels in a little over a year. He has had a tough time during his first big league stint with a 7.71 ERA, and he allowed 12 baserunners while recording just 14 outs. He appeared in just six of the Dodgers' 35 games since getting called up and was relegated essentially to mop-up duty.

Manager Don Mattingly said on Sunday that the organization was contemplating going with a shortened bullpen this week heading into the All-Star break. But we'll see how long this lasts, as Javy Guerra will pitch his second rehab game with Class A Rancho Cucamonga on Tuesday and could be ready for activation on Thursday when the Dodgers open a series in Arizona. Mattingly said on Sunday that the Dodgers could opt to wait until after the All-Star break to activate Guerra, giving him extra time either for more rehab or rest.