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Altercation in past, Guerrero eager to help Dodgers

Altercation in past, Guerrero eager to help Dodgers

LOS ANGELES -- With a possible callup to the Major Leagues looming, Alex Guerrero's season took a turn at the end of May when a dugout altercation with then-Triple-A Albuquerque teammate Miguel Olivo resulted in Guerrero losing part of his left ear.

Guerrero underwent surgery to repair the damage, and after a lengthy absence, went on to hit .329 with 15 home runs in 65 games with the Isotopes.

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On Monday, he earned the call to the Major Leagues that he had been waiting for. It was his first time back with the Dodgers since the season began in Australia.

"Things happen that sometimes shouldn't happen," Guerrero, 27, said through a translator. "But aside from that, it's all in the past. My focus now is to help the team and do the very best job I can."

Guerrero, who signed with the Dodgers in the offseason after defecting from Cuba, said he's tried to "turn the page" since that May incident. For now, he hasn't sought legal action against Olivo, whom the Dodgers released after the altercation.

"In terms of ill will, there's nothing there," Guerrero said. "And legally that'll be something for my lawyers. That's their focus."

Guerrero said he's prepared to do whatever the Dodgers need him to do. He has experience in both the infield and the outfield, but his best tool is his bat.

"If he gets the chance to play, it's an extra bat for me off the bench, it's a guy who's played some second, who's played some outfield, who's played some short, who's played some third," manager Don Mattingly said. "The main thing Alex did was swing the bat down there, and that's the main area where he showed he's ready, so for the most part, we'll see him hitting."

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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