LOS ANGELES -- What timing.
With Adam Dunn's Washington Nationals in town for a three-game set, Dodgers manager Joe Torre said Friday that general manager Ned Colletti has mentioned some names to him as the team looks to improve in an August waiver trade.
Dunn is one name the Dodgers are speculated to have claimed off waivers, but Torre and Colletti were not specific about any players the team is going after. Torre did offer reassurance that the Dodgers still think it is worth trying to improve, despite an eight-game deficit in the National League West.
"I think we're looking to help this club," Torre said. "We're not by any stretch of the imagination out of the hunt in our minds. We're going to continue to work toward making this ballclub better. There are a lot of question marks out there and one of the ones is Manny [Ramirez], as far as getting him back and when that's going to be."
Ramirez's progress from a calf injury seems to have stalled, and the Dodgers' lineup along with it. Los Angeles is hitting .218 since July 15, the second worst mark in the NL. Colletti said the uncertainty surrounding Ramirez gave him a little more incentive to go after a hitter, but he was non-committal.
A reporter asked Colletti first if he wanted a bat, then if he wanted a catcher. Colletti's response: "How about a catcher with a big bat?"
"We're looking at every area," he said. "You have a maze to walk through after July 31. A lot of different things have to transpire."
Colletti said he is good friends with Washington general manager Mike Rizzo, who was standing near the batting cage while Colletti was near the Dodgers dugout.
Colletti said the Dodgers will sometimes claim players to block other teams from acquiring them. Torre declined to say whether the names Colletti has brought him had already cleared waivers.
"I think Ned is constantly seeing if anything makes sense," Torre said. "He's mentioned some names, it's a little more of a limited situation now because it's the whole waiver period stuff. I'm not going to lock in on anything, names. Leave it at that."