Torre: Russell Martin unlikely to return this season

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More bad news on the season-ending injury front.

According to Dylan Hernandez of the Los Angeles Times, Dodgers manager Joe Torre said Thursday that catcher Russell Martin is unlikely to return from the disabled list this season. 

The catcher suffered a labral tear in his right hip while crossing home plate on Tuesday night and will require crutches to get around for the next three weeks.  Even if he begins rehabbing immediately after that, it’s a longshot that he will be ready by late September or early October.

The Dodgers currently sit seven games back of the Padres in the National League West and would have to leapfrog the Giants as well to reach the postseason.  Andre Ethier is coming around at the plate and Vicente Padilla turned in a great performance on Wednesday night, but it may be time to count Los Angeles out of this year’s playoff picture.

For now, A.J. Ellis and Brad Ausmus will fill in behind the plate for the Dodgers.  Martin, 27, turned in a .248/.347/.332 batting line, five home runs and 26 RBI over 331 at-bats this season.  He should be ready to go by the start of spring training next February.

Video: Gift Ngoepe singles in his first major league at-bat

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Pirates infielder Gift Ngoepe, just called up from Triple-A Indianapolis, singled in his first major league at-bat on Wednesday evening against Cubs starter Jon Lester. It was a well-struck ground ball up the middle in the bottom of the fourth inning. Unfortunately for him, the Pirates could not bring him around to score.

Ngoepe, who was pinch-hitting, stayed in the game to play second base.

Shelby Miller getting third opinion on elbow from Dr. James Andrews

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Diamondbacks starter Shelby Miller was placed on the 10-day disabled list on Monday due to inflammation in his right elbow. He had a second opinion from Dr. Neal ElAttrache on Tuesday and is currently awaiting a third opinion from Dr. James Andrews, Craig Grialou of Arizona Sports reports. That he’s getting a third opinion seems to imply that Miller’s elbow issue is rather serious.

Miller, 26, hasn’t been able to catch a break since joining the Diamondbacks. Last year’s nightmarish season included a finger injury stemming from mechanical woes and a brief demotion to the minor leagues. In 20 starts in the majors last year, Miller posted an ugly 6.15 ERA. This year, his ERA is a mediocre 4.09 over four starts.

The Diamondbacks called up Zack Godley to take Miller’s spot in the rotation. There was some speculation that it would be Archie Bradley instead, but he’s been working out of the bullpen.