Before their game Tuesday night against the Diamondbacks in Phoenix, the Dodgers added three to the roster, but made two bigger additions to the lineup. Matt Kemp is back in the lineup batting cleanup after missing two games, and Clayton Kershaw is back on the mound.
With Triple A Albuquerque's season now over, shortstop Dee Gordon, utility man Elian Herrera, and pitcher Stephen Fife are now Dodgers again.
Gordon was activated from the 60-day disabled list, but the Dodgers he comes back to are far different from the team on the field when he tore a ligament in his right thumb on July 4. The Dodgers have traded for eight new members of the 25-man roster since Gordon was out, including three starting position players (Hanley Ramirez, Shane Victorino, and Adrian Gonzalez) and the starting rotation has two new members in Joe Blanton and Josh Beckett.
On July 4, Luis Cruz was making his third start. Thanks to unexpected fireworks from his bat, Cruz is making his 53rd start Tuesday night (in 62 games), which leaves Gordon without a starting spot. Gordon could have been activated as early as September 3, but because he didn't have a real role on the new Dodgers he continued his rehabilitation assignment with Albuquerque. In 13 games in Triple A, including the playoffs, Gordon his .226 (12-for-53) with a .255 on-base percentage.
To make room for Gordon, the Dodgers placed Adam Kennedy on the 60-day disabled list with a right groin strain, ending Kennedy's season. Kennedy hit .262/.345/.357, and his 96 adjusted OPS+ was his highest since 2009. He started 25 games at third base and 15 more at second base. Kennedy's final at-bat of the season was a home run against Tim Lincecum on Friday, not a bad way to go out.
Herrera was Luis Cruz before there was Luis Cruz, as the 27-year old minor leaguer had some big hits for the Dodgers earlier this season. In two stints this year with the Dodgers Herrera hit .244/.326/.331, and he started games at third base, second base, and all three outfield spots.
Fife was the bridge from Nathan Eovaldi to Blanton, as the former was traded to Miami in the trade for Ramirez on July 25. Fife walked a tightrope with 25 baserunners allowed in 16 2/3 innings, but ground-balled his way to a 2.16 ERA in his brief time in Los Angeles.
|1B||Gonzalez (L)||LF||Kubel (L)
|RF||Ethier (L)||C||Montero (L)
Game Time: 6:40 p.m.