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Howie Kendrick, Jimmy Rollins making progress toward return to Dodgers

Richard Mackson-USA TODAY Sports

LOS ANGELES -- Howie Kendrick and Jimmy Rollins continued to make progress in their return from their respective injuries, but there isn't yet a set timetable for the Dodgers opening day middle infield to return.

Kendrick got several at-bats against right-handed pitcher Steve Smith in a simulated game on the field before Tuesday's game against the Rockies, and will run on Wednesday before getting reevaluated.

"We haven't committed to anything beyond him running Wednesday," manager Don Mattingly said.

Kendrick last played for the Dodgers on Aug. 9, out since then with a strained left hamstring.

Rollins, who last played on Sept. 6 and is out with a bruised right index finger, too batting practice and fielding drills with the team on Tuesday, but manager Don Mattingly was sounded less certain of Rollins' role than he did over the weekend when he told reporters Rollins would be the starting shortstop once he is healthy.

Now, with Corey Seager hitting .432/.543/.676 in 11 games, the future is less clear for Rollins.

"We'll see. We'll use Corey. We have to give [Justin Turner] some days off. We're going to put the best lineup out there," Mattingly said. "Right now it's been day-to-day. We'll see where it goes from there."

Seager starts his eighth straight game at shortstop on Tuesday, and his 11th start in 12 games since getting promoted from Triple-A.

As expected, Justin Ruggiano starts in left field and A.J. Ellis at catcher against left-handed Chris Rusin for Colorado. Ellis is batting fifth for the first time since Sept. 25, 2013.

Chris Heisey gets the start in right field in place of Scott Van Slyke, who is nursing a sore right hand.

Peraza improving

The Dodgers got good news on the left hamstring of Jose Peraza, who will not be placed on the disabled list. The speedy infielder was working out with the Dodgers on Tuesday, and remains in the mix for a potential spot on the playoff roster.

"He did some different things today stretching," Mattingly said. "We feel like he's got a chance to be a part of what we're doing going forward."