first_img Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error It’s looking more and more like Ellis is Kershaw’s unofficial-official personal catcher.Mattingly didn’t exactly shoot down the notion.“If a pitcher has a preference and it works out, and everything’s working out the right way, we’ll always try to take that into consideration,” Mattingly said. “It’s just not going to work out all the time.”Perhaps.But two up, two down so far with Kershaw and Ellis.As for Grandal, he arrived in Los Angeles from the San Diego Padres in the Matt Kemp trade, with a strong reputation for framing pitches but an equally disconcerting reputation for falling out of favor with the Padres pitching staff.On one hand, Zack Greinke said he “couldn’t draw up a better catcher” after working with Grandal on Tuesday. On the other, it got so bad for Grandal in San Diego last year that he wasn’t behind the plate when Tyson Ross, Andrew Cashner and Ian Kennedy pitched.Mattingly heard all the talk — the good and the bad. But once Grandal reported to spring training, it was a blank canvas as far as Mattingly was concerned.“It’s like anything else, you get guys from other organizations and I think the main thing for me is, this is a new start, a clean slate,” Mattingly said. “Let’s just judge what we see, have an open mind and see what we get.”So far so good, obviously.“It’s been really good. I’m happy with both guys,” Mattingly said. “As much as anything, about their relationship and how they’re going about their business.”As far as how the position will play out — playing time mostly — Mattingly isn’t concerned. “Not really. I think it’ll be fine,” he said. “I don’t think it’ll be that big an issue.”No Webb yetThe Dodgers don’t expect new relief pitcher Ryan Webb to join them before concluding their weekend series in Arizona against the Diamondbacks.The veteran right-hander was acquired from the Baltimore Orioles on Thursday along with minor-league catcher Brian Ward in exchange for minor leaguers Ben Rowen — who went to Palos Verdes High — and Charlie O’Brien.Webb has 72 hours to report from the time the trade was consummated. But Mattingly was told not to expect him by Sunday.“I’m not sure. Just talking to (general manager) Andrew (Friedman) and those guys just don’t expect him here,” Mattingly said. “I don’t know all the particulars, I’ve just (been told) don’t expect him here.”Mattingly, in fact, wasn’t exactly sure whether Webb would join the Dodgers or report to Triple-A. As far as what the Dodgers are getting in the relief pitcher, Mattingly has limited up-close evidence.“The only thing I can tell you about him is just seeing him from when he was in San Diego and a little bit in Miami. A big guy with heavy sink,” Mattingly said. “But I haven’t seen him in a few years.”Gonzalez on a rollDodgers first baseman Adrian Gonzalez took a three-game home run streak into Friday’s game against the Diamondbacks — five if you count the last two games of last season. Mattingly can relate, having gone a major league record-tying eight straight games hitting a home run in 1987.“It’s pretty good. It wasn’t bad,” Mattingly said, recalling his hot streak. “Didn’t hate it.”What he remembers most was how bad he was swinging the bat just before getting hot.“I was really struggling before that started,” Mattingly said. “They brought (Bobby) Murcer in just to talk about things. He just said, ‘Hey just try this little simple thing.’“He wanted me to just sit, stay there. Simplify everything.”And away he went. PHOENIX >> Yasmani Grandal was back behind the plate for the Dodgers on Friday to open a three-game series against the Arizona Diamondbacks.That’s the third straight game Grandal was in the starting lineup. He’s now started three games to the one start made by last year’s starter, A.J Ellis.Is a pattern developing?“Not necessarily,” Dodgers manager Don Mattingly said. “It’ll play out. There’s gonna be spots where A.J. is gonna be catching.”center_img Like, perhaps, Saturday night against the Diamondbacks?“Yup,” Mattingly confirmed.Not surprisingly, Clayton Kershaw is the scheduled starting pitcher Saturday.Ellis, it should be noted, was behind the plate on Opening Day when Kershaw took the mound against the San Diego Padres.The coincidence is impossible to ignore.last_img

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