Dodgers summon Miller, designate Ortiz

Dodgers summon Miller, designate Ortiz

CHICAGO -- The Dodgers purchased the contract of right-handed reliever Justin Miller from Triple-A Albuquerque on Thursday and designated for assignment reliever Ramon Ortiz.

Despite the move, the Dodgers remain a pitcher short. Manager Joe Torre said another move is likely, probably a swing man, and he indicated it wouldn't be made until after the club sees what its latest fifth-starter candidate, Carlos Monasterios, does in Colorado on Friday night.

That could mean left-hander Scott Elbert is under consideration. He starts for Albuquerque on Friday. Charlie Haeger has a rehab start for Class A Inland Empire on Saturday, and Torre said, "my guess is he'll join us shortly."

Torre said he would use the durable Miller to pitch out of a jam during an inning or for multiple frames.

"He can pitch every day. I saw him do that with the Giants last year," said Torre. "In Spring Training, we knew we couldn't take him, even though you want on your staff someone with durability."

Miller, 32, is known as the "Human Tattoo," because his body is covered with them, and he's spent parts of six seasons in the Major Leagues with Toronto, Florida and San Francisco.

The Dodgers have 10 days to either trade, release or get Ortiz through waivers to send him to the Minor Leagues. He can refuse such an assignment, and said he would first talk to his agent before committing.

"I'm happy for the opportunity they gave me to start and relieve," said Ortiz. "I try to do my best. That's baseball. It's only two months, but I don't put excuses. I know I'll be fine."

Ortiz was 1-2 with a 6.30 ERA. Miller, coming off shoulder surgery last season, was 0-1 with a 2.22 ERA in 18 games with Albuquerque.

"Any time you get called up, it's a surprise," Miller said. "But I've been doing this long enough to know that you just go down and battle and control what you can control and put yourself in the best position, so when they need someone for it to be you."

Meanwhile, George Sherrill seems to be making a miraculous recovery. Two days after going on the disabled list with middle back stiffness, he was able to throw a bullpen session. He's likely to continue the sessions, then go out on a Minor League rehab assignment.