GLENDALE, Ariz. -- Jon Garland is being skipped the first time through the Dodgers' rotation in the spring, but there's apparently no cause for alarm.
"It's not a red flag," said pitching coach Rick Honeycutt. "It's precautionary in my mind. It's not as much him, as me. This is the first time I've had him in Spring Training, and his offseason throwing program is different than the other guys. He's just started throwing off the mound."
Honeycutt set up the first cycle of the rotation for fourth starter Hiroki Kuroda to pitch Saturday, Opening Day starter Clayton Kershaw to pitch Monday, Chad Billingsley on Tuesday and Ted Lilly on Wednesday. Each of them will have pitched live batting practice five days before his start.
John Ely, who started 18 games for the Dodgers last year, will start Sunday's game in Garland's slot. Garland has been an innings-eater throughout his career, and pitched 200 innings last year with San Diego.