Belisario on time and in shape

Belisario on time and in shape

GLENDALE, Ariz. -- On Tuesday, for the first time in his four Spring Trainings with the Dodgers, Ronald Belisario reported to camp on time.

In fact, Belisario has been working out at Camelback Ranch for several weeks, having obtained the work visa that eluded him throughout 2011.

There's still the 25-game suspension he must serve for violating MLB's drug policy; that takes effect when the season begins. He will be allowed to play in Spring Training games, general manager Ned Colletti said, and can participate in a 10-game Minor League rehab assignment before he returns from his suspension.

Belisario is also one of five Dodgers out of options, meaning he cannot be sent back to the Minors without clearing waivers and made available to every other club.

"He looks in good shape," manager Don Mattingly said of the right-handed reliever, who was a key part of the 2009 bullpen but has been plagued by legal and substance problems since. "Everybody knows he's had problems, but he's here, and that's a good sign."

Belisario's problems in 2010 led to the free-agent signing of Matt Guerrier and the acquisition of Blake Hawksworth. The Dodgers also added Todd Coffey when Hawksworth was slow recovering from elbow surgery.

Mattingly said that because his bullpen is deep, he's not counting on Belisario.

"He's back to starting over," Mattingly said. "This is a new start for him, and we'll just see. We know the demons. We've got to see what he's got. He's been a good guy. It's not like he's a bad guy, but to this point, it's tough to count on him when you build a club, and three of four seasons he can't even get to camp."