SAN DIEGO -- For Wednesday's must-win game against the Padres, Dodgers manager Don Mattingly had four regulars out of the starting lineup.
Outfielder Shane Victorino was scratched because of continued soreness in his sprained left wrist that bothers him batting right-handed. Second baseman Mark Ellis was sick all day and on IV fluids. Outfielder Andre Ethier sat because he is hitting .143 lifetime against San Diego starting pitcher Clayton Richard. And catcher A.J. Ellis, 3-for-11 lifetime against Richard, had started six of the last seven games.
So Elian Herrera (1-for-3 against Richard) started in left field, Juan Rivera (0-for-8) in right field, Nick Punto (2-for-5) at second base and Matt Treanor (2-for-7) behind the plate. Rivera was not in the original lineup but replaced Victorino.
Mattingly -- whose club entered play 4 1/2 games out of the last National League Wild Card berth with eight games to go -- bristled at the suggestion he was waving the white flag.
"You can perceive it how you want it," he said. "That's not the case. This is what I feel gives us the best chance to win. Mark Ellis and Vic can't play. A.J. hasn't hit this guy. He can use a day and today is that day.
"Dre, this guy has given him a lot of trouble and that tells me to change it up a little bit."