GLENDALE, Ariz. -- Right-handed reliever Ramon Troncoso cleared waivers and was outrighted to Triple-A Albuquerque by the Dodgers Friday.Troncoso, out of options, was designated for assignment on March 22 to make room on the 40-man roster for Ronald Belisario, who needed to be moved from the restricted list even though he will start the season serving a 25-game suspension for violating the MLB drug policy. The 29-year-old Troncoso, after needing four seasons in the Dominican Rookie League, seemed headed to a promising career when he posted a 2.72 ERA in 73 appearances in 2009. But early in 2010, with Belisario on the restricted list for reporting late to Spring Training, Troncoso assumed an exhaustive workload and his sinker hasn't been the same. He made only 18 appearances with the Dodgers last year.
Lilly will open season on DL
GLENDALE, Ariz. -- Dodgers pitcher Ted Lilly will start the season on the 15-day disabled list, and Chris Capuano will start the third game of the season in San Diego, manager Don Mattingly said Friday.Although Lilly was able to throw a full bullpen session Friday without neck pain and said he would lobby to avoid starting the season on the DL, management decided otherwise. "We don't feel he's going to be ready," Mattingly said of Lilly, who last pitched in a game March 21 because of recurring neck pain. "We'll flip Cap into that spot and go from there." Capuano's start Friday made the decision easier. He allowed only one run on two hits with seven strikeouts in eight innings against his former club, Milwaukee. The Dodgers will add an eighth reliever to take Lilly's place, probably right-hander Josh Lindblom, because he has options and can be easily sent to the Minor Leagues when Lilly returns. Lilly, entering the second season of a three-year, $33 million contract, will be placed on the DL retroactively so he will be eligible to return in time to start April 14, the first time the fifth-starter spot comes up. It will be skipped the first time through the rotation because of a day off. Lilly will throw a simulated game to build arm strength Monday and pitch in a Minor League rehab game for Rancho Cucamonga on April 8. "It felt good today," Lilly said. "I can't predict the future, but I don't expect any setbacks from here. I don't feel any pain. Maybe a little stiff, but nothing grabbing." Lilly said his arm felt good and his stamina was fine, arguing that as long as his mechanics are correct, he could throw 100 pitches. "Whatever decision they make, it's best for the club and that's what I'm on board for," he said before the decision. "Obviously I'd like to make all of my appointments on time. If I hadn't come up with a neck issue, I wouldn't have put the club in this situation. Ultimately, it comes down to what's best for the 25 guys, not myself."
Dodgers' split-squad day has mixed results
GLENDALE, Ariz. -- With a pair of split-squad games, the Dodgers had their share of good and bad news on Friday.Andre Ethier continued his spring assault with two-run homer and two-run double against Milwaukee for 16 RBIs in 17 games. He's batting .400 with a .933 slugging percentage and a .440 on-base percentage. Chris Capuano struck out seven in six innings while reliever Matt Guerrier, who's healed from a bad back, made his first exhibition appearance since March 11 and allowed a leadoff home run to Brooks Conrad in one inning, but said he felt fine and will be ready for Opening Day. Shortstop Dee Gordon had a two-run triple against the Cubs, his third of the spring, while Luis Cruz had two hits and two RBIs to continue his late bid for the last roster spot. But reliever Todd Coffey came up with his second consecutive shaky outing, charged with four unearned runs in two-thirds of an inning. Although he was victim of a Jake Lemmerman throwing error, he also allowed three hits and a walk. Jamey Wright, who won the final bullpen spot, was charged with three runs in one inning. And in a spring oddity, the Brewers batted for pitcher Victor Garate in the top of the ninth inning, but sent him out to pitch the bottom of the ninth, and it went unnoticed on the field, if not in the press box.
Mattingly lobbies for night games down stretch
GLENDALE, Ariz. -- Dodgers manager Don Mattingly wants to make some changes."I'm lobbying to get the last week of Spring Training games played at night," said Mattingly. "We should be able to if we get other teams to do it. Major League Baseball makes the schedule, but they don't pick the times. "It would just get us on schedule. At this time of year, with the change in routines, it would give guys a chance to get their things together, make calls during the day. It would be a nice way to finish up camp with the transition." Mattingly said he wasn't sure why baseball hadn't made the change already. "Maybe the same reason for why they had everybody running at the end of a workout, when you're stiff, instead of the beginning, right after you've stretched out and are fresh. I think it's just common sense. I discussed it with Ned [Colletti, general manager], and he seemed to like it, so we'll see."
Dodgers take note of MegaMillions lottery
GLENDALE, Ariz. -- Even if those MegaMillions numbers come up just right, Matt Kemp said $640 million isn't enough to get him to quit his job."Heck, no," said the Dodgers center fielder, just entering a $160 million, eight-year contract, but planning to buy some tickets for the lottery after Friday's game. "That would just make an 0-for-4 way better to deal with." The Dodgers wouldn't need to go looking for a new manager if the tickets Don Mattingly bought came up lucky. "You kidding me? I love this," he said. "I'd never leave this. Everybody thinks I'd rather be in New York. I love what I'm doing and I don't care where it is. I love the challenge of management, of getting a team to play the right way. "It's kind of like growing a garden. You put the landscaping in, doesn't look so good. A year later, it's pretty awesome. I interviewed with Cleveland, they told me we wouldn't sign free agents. I don't care. Young guys turn into the good guys." Tony Gwynn agreed with Kemp that such financial security could make the game easier to play. "I would probably play better if I won," he said. "I wouldn't worry about what's next for me. It really would be all about playing." Adam Kennedy said he was "absolutely" buying some tickets before the drawing, but he said that kind of windfall would solve his issues with Southland traffic. "I'd give my truck to one of the clubbies," he said, "and use the money to buy a helicopter for the commute from Orange County." Reliever Matt Guerrier said he wouldn't walk away from the game, either. "It's not about the money," he said. "It's about the fun of coming to the field. We're like a bunch of kids. I wouldn't quit my job, but I'd give money to some of my family so they could quit theirs." Catcher Matt Treanor said he, too, would continue playing, with an asterisk. "I'd request two weeks off in the summer to watch my wife [volleyball star Misty May] in the Olympics," he said. Jerry Hairston said he wouldn't give up baseball, but he would golf more seriously. "I'd hire the best golf instructor and go for the Senior Tour," he said. "I'd have 12 years to make a run at it."
Ken Gurnick is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.