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Dodgers spring training 2013: Matt Kemp talks, Zach Lee balks in 7-5 loss to Padres

The Dodgers' split squad at Camelback Ranch on Friday lost 7-5 to the San Diego Padres.

Zach Lee did strike out two on Friday, but also suffered the loss with two runs allowed in the ninth inning.
Zach Lee did strike out two on Friday, but also suffered the loss with two runs allowed in the ninth inning.
Eric Stephen | True Blue LA

The Dodgers lost 7-5 to the Padres on Friday in split squad action at Camelback Ranch, but the big story was the return to game action by Matt Kemp. The center fielder, recovering from offseason surgery on his left shoulder, was the designated hitter on Friday and went hitless in his two at-bats.

Kemp grounded out to third base in the first inning against Freddy Garcia, and struck out looking against Garcia in the third inning.

"I was excited. I felt a little jumpy, just like any other first spring training game," Kemp told reporters after he exited the game, per Bill Plunkett of the Orange County Register.

Manager Don Mattingly said after the game that Kemp would not play on Saturday when the Dodgers travel to Peoria to play the Mariners, but Kemp will play on Sunday against the Indians at Camelback Ranch. Mattingly said Kemp would likely be the designated hitter again on Sunday, with Monday's off day, then would begin playing center field in games after that.

The loss went to Zach Lee, the 2010 first round draft pick, who allowed a pair of runs in the ninth inning on three hits. The first run was scored on a balk when home plate umpire Doug Eddings said Lee started his motion then stopped, then stepped off the rubber. Mattingly said it was a learning experience for the 21-year-old.

"All this stuff that happens to these guys when they come over here is good for them," Mattingly said. "They should learn something just about every time they come over here."


  • Zack Greinke was stretched to three innings in his second spring start and allowed two runs on five hits.
  • Joc Pederson, seeing his first major league game action of the spring, doubled to center in his second at-bat and was 1-for-2. Pederson played five innings in right field.
  • C.J. Retherford, also up from the minor league side, homered in the seventh inning to tie the score at 5-5.
  • The Dodgers signed one player from their tryout camp Thursday. Robbie Garvey, a 23-year-old outfielder and no relation to the former Dodgers first baseman, hit .220 with two home runs and 17 steals for the Washington Wild Things of the independent Frontier League in 2012. That must have been one hell of a workout.
  • Both Chris Capuano and Chad Billingsley are expected to throw roughly three innings on Saturday, or possibly less depending on their pitch count. It will be the second game of the spring for both pitchers.