DENVER -- Dodgers left-handed reliever Scott Elbert was placed on the 15-day disabled list Wednesday with persistent elbow pain that likely will require offseason arthroscopic surgery.
Shawn Tolleson, optioned to Class A Rancho Cucamonga on Monday, was recalled to replace him.
Elbert, who spent three weeks on the disabled list with the ailment from July 26 to Aug. 19, has a piece of scar tissue behind his elbow causing the pain. He last pitched Sunday, facing three batters and allowing two hits. He was unavailable to pitch Monday and Tuesday nights in Denver.
Manager Don Mattingly said the club hoped to avoid putting Elbert on the DL with rosters expanding on Saturday, but his unavailability Tuesday night forced Mattingly to allow starting pitcher Chris Capuano to bat in the fourth inning with two outs and two runners on while trailing, 5-1, instead of sending up a pinch-hitter. Capuano struck out.
"We tried to get to September but couldn't do it," Mattingly said. "We can't take any more chances pitching short in the bullpen. He knows we have to do something at the end of the year, but he's been wanting to pitch through it."
Elbert has been reliable in his role as the club's primary lefty out of the bullpen with a 2.20 ERA in 43 games.
Tolleson has tossed scoreless relief in 13 of his last 14 appearances -- a span of 13 innings -- and posted a 1.38 ERA since July 24.
Overall, the 24-year-old Tolleson has limited opposing batters to a .186 batting average, including a .106 mark against right-handed hitters (5-for-47), and he's 1-0 with a 3.42 ERA in 25 appearances
Ken Gurnick is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.