Speedy outfielder Oeltjen joins Dodgers

Speedy outfielder Oeltjen joins Dodgers

SAN DIEGO -- Trent Oeltjen is the newest Dodger after having his contract purchased from Triple-A Albuquerque on Tuesday to replace Ronnie Belliard, who was designated for assignment.

Oeltjen, 27, bats and throws left-handed. He hit .347 in 49 games at Albuquerque after joining the club at midseason, when he opted out of a contract while playing for Milwaukee's Triple-A affiliate.

Combined, Oeltjen hit .320 with 13 homers, 71 RBIs, 87 runs and 27 stolen bases.

A native of Australia, he originally signed with Minnesota, but made his Major League debut with Arizona last year. Last Sept. 10 as a pinch-runner, Oeltjen scored the winning run against the Dodgers on a walk-off walk.

"I was surprised," Oeltjen said of his callup. "They told me yesterday after our last game and I was getting ready to go home to Australia."

Oeltjen primarily plays the corner outfield positions.

"I'm a gap-to-gap speed guy," he said.

Oeltjen almost was promoted at the end of July, manager Joe Torre said, but the Dodgers instead added an extra pitcher.

"We want to see him at this level," said Torre. "He's got speed and we haven't had a lot of that. We'll see what it looks like."

Craig Shipley, Jeff Williams and Luke Prokopec are other Australians that have played for the Dodgers.