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Carl Crawford held out Thursday, Matt Kemp closer to playing

A sore forearm sidelined the Dodgers left fielder on Thursday, while the center fielder is getting closer to playing in games.

Rob Tringali

A pair of Dodgers outfielders are going in different directions in their comeback from surgery. Carl Crawford was held out of batting practice and throwing drills on Thursday with left forearm tightness, while Matt Kemp is getting closer to playing in a game, which could come as soon as Friday.

"I don't know if it's a step back or just a pause for Carl," said manager Don Mattingly.

Crawford, rehabbing from Tommy John surgery on his left elbow last Aug. 23, took batting practice against live pitchers on Monday, but hasn't been able to do so in the last two days. On Thursday morning when hitting off the tee in the batting cage, Crawford felt tightness in his forearm, and was shut down.

"We don't know if he threw a little too much or hard the other day, but as Sue (Falsone, Dodgers trainer) tells me it's not uncommon to be going through this," Mattingly said. "We still look at it like we have plenty of time before opening day, so we're going to be cautious with him."

Kemp, meanwhile, got better news. He has taken both live batting practice and regular batting practice in each of the last few days, and felt good on Thursday morning.

"(Matt) is full go today, and we'll see what happens after today and make some decisions about tomorrow," Mattingly said.

The Dodgers play a pair of games Friday, at home against the Padres and in Tempe against the Angels. Mattingly said it's possible Kemp could play Friday, and not necessarily be limited to designated hitter.

"Once (Matt) gets ready to go, he's going to be able to play the field," Mattingly said. "It would be a good day. If Matt could go tomorrow, that would be great. But I wouldn't put him in there until I get a confirmation that everything is going in the right direction."