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After undergoing surgery today to repair a separated shoulder, Doug Mientkiewicz will remain in Southern California for the duration of an arduous rehabilitation that may last until September.

"I think a lot of the reason why I was brought here wasn't so much for what I do on the field but more so for what I do in the clubhouse or what I do in the dugout," Mientkiewicz said. "Two arms, one arm, no arms - I can still do that."

While Mientkiewicz may not be able to contribute on the field until late in the year, he can still provide the institutional knowledge of a proven winner. Mientkiewicz won a World Series with the Red Sox in 2004 and was a main contributor to the 2002 and 2003 Twins teams that made the postseason.

He played for Manager Joe Torre in New York in 2007 and followed him to Los Angeles this year as a non-roster invitee out of spring training. By suffering an injury so early in the season, Mientkiewicz felt like he'd let Torre down, and vowed to make up for the loss of on-field production by contributing in other ways.

"We're going to have a stretch this year when we're not playing well," Mientkiewicz said. "That's when you need to bond together. That's why I need to be here. I want to feel the joy when we win. I want to feel the lows when we lose. You can only do that by being here and not going away."

His teammates have been equally supportive. Soon after the injury, Andre Ethier tacked an autographed photo above Mientkiewicz's locker that read, "To Doug . . . Feet first, hands up when you slide!"

"When I get a picture like that, I love it," Mientkiewicz said. "That's how it's supposed to be. It's supposed to be a family here."


James McDonald, making just his second career major league start, pitched 4 1/3 innings, allowing just four hits and zero runs. Torre, who had hoped McDonald could go five full innings, pulled him with one out in the fifth after allowing walks to pitcher Ubaldo Jimenez and Ian Stewart.

"There were a few occasions he lost a little bit of control," catcher Russell Martin said. "He's young. He's got a lot to learn. A few times he threw some good change-ups, some good breaking balls. He had control issues a little bit. He's got the ability, he's got the potential. He's got to keep gaining confidence."


The Colorado Rockies are having a difficult time replacing closer Brian Fuentes, who signed a two-year, $17.5 million contract with the Angels this offseason.

Before Friday's game against the Dodgers , Rockies manager Clint Hurdle demoted Huston Street and named Manny Corpas as the team's new closer.

Street (0-1, 9.64 ERA) has given up five earned runs in six appearances. Wednesday against the Cubs, Street allowed a home run, a walk and a single to the only three batters he faced in the ninth inning.

Corpas does have prior experience in the role. He replaced Fuentes in 2007 when the Rockies made their run to the World Series. Fuentes, however, reclaimed the job in 2008.

"The last three outs of a game are very significant," Hurdle said. "It's a pat on the back or a punch in the gut."


Pitcher Corey Wade, placed on the 15-day disabled list with shoulder bursitis, showed signs of improvement after he was given a cortisone shot and will not immediately require an MRI. He'll head to Camelback Ranch this week for more rehabilitation work. . . . Hiroki Kuroda (oblique strain) threw Saturday and Sunday and reported little pain. . . . Clayton Kershaw will start Tuesday at Houston, followed by Randy Wolf, Chad Billingsley and Eric Stults, who was pushed back in the rotation in order to use Wolf and Billingsley on normal rest.

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50: Runs scored by the Dodgers during their six-game homestand

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Added: April 22, 2009

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