Kennedy could return from groin strain soon

Kennedy could return from groin strain soon

GLENDALE, Ariz. -- Dodgers infielder Adam Kennedy said he didn't think the right groin strain he suffered Sunday was "too serious" and he could be back on the field in two or three days.

He said he suffered the injury slipping off second base while taking a throw on a force out in the first inning, but played three more innings.

"I knew it was bad when I came out of the box my first at-bat," said Kennedy, who walked in the fourth and stole second base without a throw. "Every spring I go through a little something that takes a day or two."

Why steal a base with a sore leg?

"Anybody can steal a base healthy," he said to teammate Dee Gordon. "Try stealing with a groin."

Second baseman Mark Ellis was a late scratch from Monday's starting lineup after becoming ill and was replaced by Jerry Hairston, who is playing two days after revealing that his shoulder had bothered him all spring, but is now healed after he committed five throwing errors.

Infielder Justin Sellers, out with a skin irritation, said he should return to game action Tuesday. Sellers has moved into position to make the club as a utility infielder. With Hairston's throwing problems, Sellers can back up at shortstop, and his offense is improved from last year's callup.

"He's doing what we've talked about and his batting practice has been really good," said manager Don Mattingly. "He's realistic about where he wants to be, in the big leagues, and if he hits like he did last year with balls in the air, it limits his chances."

Rubby De La Rosa (Tommy John surgery) and Blake Hawksworth (elbow surgery and infection) could open the season on the 60-day disabled list, which would free up two spots for non-roster invitees like Jamey Wright, John Grabow, Josh Fields or Luis Cruz.

Hawksworth still is hopeful of being ready by the end of April, although he's had to shut down light tossing because the joint is still irritated from two January procedures. De La Rosa is throwing hard already, but is being held back because his surgery was only seven months ago. He hopes to be throwing off a mound in three weeks.