Notes: Dodgers acquire Cruz Jr.

Notes: Dodgers acquire Cruz Jr.

LOS ANGELES -- The Dodgers on Tuesday acquired outfielder Jose Cruz Jr. from the Boston Red Sox for a Minor League player to be named, probably later this week.

Cruz, 31, is a nine-year veteran who was traded by the Arizona Diamondbacks to the Red Sox on July 30 for two Minor Leaguers, went 3-for-12, then was designated for assignment. With the Diamondbacks, he hit .213 with 12 home runs and had his greatest success against the Dodgers with a .320 average, three homers and eight of his 28 RBIs.

He was attractive to the Dodgers as a versatile switch-hitter, especially with the continued hamstring problems of Ricky Ledee and the absences of J.D. Drew and Jayson Werth.

Manager Jim Tracy said Cruz will occasionally start, along with providing options off the bench.

"He's not a stranger to the Major League level," said Tracy, who has been using a lot of strangers to the Major League level this season. "I've seen him play a dynamic center field. There was a time where his tools were absolutely electric. He was a very highly touted, talked-about player."

Cruz has 187 career home runs, is one of three players in history to hit 30 homers and steal 30 bases in the same season, and was a Gold Glove outfielder in 2003. Initially a center fielder, Dodgers general manager Paul DePodesta said scouting reports suggest he is now better suited for the corner outfield positions.

DePodesta said Cruz's recent play compares favorably with his earlier years. His .783 on-base plus slugging percentage is higher than that of Dodgers starters Cesar Izturis, Jason Phillips, Jason Repko, Oscar Robles, Jose Valentin and Werth.

"Frankly, the last two years we've had good reports on him and good numbers," said DePodesta, who was with the Dodgers' Jacksonville affiliate. "We haven't seen any downturn of play. He's a real good fit for us."

DePodesta said he was hopeful Cruz would report by Wednesday, at which time a corresponding roster move would be made. Cruz earns $3.5 million this year and is eligible for free agency after the season.

Werth's rehab: Werth began an injury rehabilitation assignment Monday night with Triple-A Las Vegas and went 0-for-2 with a walk, then homered with a walk and a strikeout Tuesday.

Werth, who has a chronic inflamed bursa sac in his left knee, will have it repaired with offseason surgery. He will return to Los Angeles on Wednesday to be reevaluated.

Phillips, out with a bruised hand since the Washington series, said he's ready to play, but was not in Tuesday's lineup. Tracy said Phillips would return to the lineup at first base Wednesday and would catch later in the week.

Miller promoted: Top pitching prospect Greg Miller, recovering from shoulder surgery, was promoted Monday from Class A Vero Beach to Double-A Jacksonville, then pitched a scoreless ninth inning for his first save, following eight scoreless innings by Edwin Jackson.

The left-handed Miller, who missed the entire 2004 campaign, pitched 12 innings during a four-game rehabilitation assignment with the Gulf Coast League Dodgers, who started June 30. Following the rehab stint, he was assigned to Vero Beach and went 1-0 with a 0.93 ERA in five appearances, limiting opponents to a .136 batting average in 9 2/3 innings.

Bowling for dollars: Monday night's inaugural Eric Gagne Dodgers Dream Foundation Bowling Extravaganza at Lucky Strike Hollywood raised more than $70,000.

Children's Hospital visit: Milton Bradley, Valentin and Jeff Weaver will kick off the the fifth annual Children's Hospital Los Angeles (CHLA) Night at Dodger Stadium on Wednesday by visiting the hospital from 1-2 p.m. PT.

Bradley, Valentin and Weaver will be present to sign autographs, take photos, give out Dodgers goodies and spend time visiting with CHLA patients in the Childrens Center for Cancer and Blood Diseases, the nation's largest pediatric hematology/oncology program.

Coming up: Derek Lowe starts for the Dodgers against Philadelphia on Wednesday night. Lowe picked up a win in his last start, a 12-6 victory at Pittsburgh. He won for only the second time in 12 road starts, giving up two earned runs and five hits in six innings. He won in Philadelphia July 20, allowing two runs over seven frames.

Ken Gurnick is a reporter for This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.