LOS ANGELES -- The Dodgers on Friday activated catcher A.J. Ellis from the disabled list, nearly three weeks after spraining his right ankle stepping on teammate Drew Butera's catching mask during the celebration of Josh Beckett's no-hitter on May 25.
To make room for Ellis, the Dodgers optioned catcher Tim Federowicz back to Triple-A Albuquerque.
Ellis has hit .170/.350/.213 this season, limited to just 15 games with a pair of injuries. In addition to missing 17 games with his right ankle injury, Ellis missed 34 games after surgery to repair a torn meniscus in his left knee on April 8.
Through a timing quirk, Ellis has only played three home games so far this season.
Ellis started 128 and 109 games behind the plate in 2012 and 2013, respectively, ranking fourth among major league catchers the previous two seasons in both starts and innings.
This is of ancillary concern, but even if somehow Ellis were to start every remaining game the rest of the season he would have 109 starts, falling short of a pair of incentives built into his $3.55 million contract: $50,000 for each of 110 and 115 starts.
Federowicz was 8-for-61 (.131/.169/.230) and started 17 games behind the plate. He did hit a go-ahead three-run home run in the seventh inning in Colorado on Saturday, a game the Dodgers ultimately lost in extra innings. Federowicz threw out nine of 22 would-be base stealers (40.9%).
During Ellis' second absence, Butera started 13 of 17 games behind the plate.