LOS ANGELES -- The Dodgers on Friday optioned relief pitcher Daniel Coulombe to Triple-A Oklahoma City, and recalled outfielder Scott Schebler from Triple-A.
The move is likely to have an extra bat for the weekend with Howie Kendrick nursing a stiff left knee. He was held out of Thursday's game with knee stiffness after jamming it sliding into third base in the second game of Wednesday night's game in Colorado.
"Emotionally we're good," manager Don Mattingly said of his roster on Thursday. "Physically, we're a little beat up."
For Schebler, his first stint in the big leagues could be a short one, with Yasiel Puig expected to be activated some time next week. But that doesn't make it any less meaningful to the 2010 draft pick. Per Jeff Johnson of The Gazette in Schebler's hometown of Cedar Rapids, Iowa:
The phone rang at 1:38 a.m. Friday, waking up Deb and Jeff Schebler. Deb finally answered it.
"Hi, mom," their son, Scott, said on the other end of the line. "I’m going to L.A."
Not completely coherent, yet, Deb’s first response was classic.
"For what?" she said.
"Mom, I’m going to L.A.," Scott Schebler repeated.
"For what?" Deb Schebler said again.
To play in the big leagues, mom! To play in the big leagues.
Schebler is hitting .216/.307/.389 with six home runs in 49 games in Triple-A, but he more importantly he is a warm body who is healthy, something lacking right now. With infielder Darwin Barney on the DL with a hamstring injury for OKC, the only other healthy, available position player on the 40-man is Andy Wilkins.
Austin Barnes could have been considered, but would have needed a disabled list move to return since he was optioned on Tuesday.
"With Danny and Carlos Frias giving us as many innings as they could last night, we felt like a player was going to benefit us more [than a pitcher]," Mattingly said Friday. "We like him in general. Being an outfielder, being left-handed is something we'd like to have right now."
Schebler starts in left field tonight, batting seventh and making his major league debut, with Enrique Hernandez and second base and Alberto Callaspo at third.
Coulombe was in take-one-for-the-team mode on Thursday, throwing the final 2⅓ innings, his longest outing of the year, throwing 42 pitches in the process. This is the fourth time he has been optioned to Triple-A this season, but he knew the drill in April.
"They told me coming into this year that I'd most likely be an up-and-down guy, so just be ready for it. It's a lot of traveling, but it's better being that guy than not being that guy," Coulombe said Thursday. "It's definitely a challenge, but I enjoy it."
Coulombe has a 1.15 ERA in 13 games with Oklahoma City this season, with 18 strikeouts and four walks in 15⅔ innings.
"Last time I got sent down, Don Mattingly told me 'This is your job this year, and it doesn't necessarily mean it will be like this all year or the rest of your career,' and I'm okay with that," Coulombe said.