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Crawford could return to lineup once DL stint ends

Crawford could return to lineup once DL stint ends

LOS ANGELES -- The Dodgers had upbeat medical reports Wednesday on a trio of starting position players on the disabled list.

Manager Don Mattingly said he was hopeful left fielder Carl Crawford would be ready to return from the 15-day disabled list when eligible on June 12 after his most strenuous workout yet on a sprained left ankle. Crawford ran in the outfield, simulated chasing down fly balls and took batting practice.

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"It's still a little bit sore in there, but I'm building strength," said Crawford. "I still have eight days and I hope everything will be fine. The way it's been going, I'll probably keep ramping up every day with more intensity."

Third baseman Juan Uribe, nursing a strained right hamstring since May 8, was back taking infield and batting practice with the club on Wednesday. Mattingly said Uribe is "gaining traction" in his recovery.

Mattingly said catcher A.J. Ellis is a few days behind Crawford with a sprained right ankle but continues to improve. Ellis would be eligible to be activated Sunday, but that's not likely.

Ken Gurnick is a reporter for MLB.com. Michael Lananna is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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