Alex Guerrero is finally ready for baseball activities five weeks after Miguel Olivo bit his ear off

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Five weeks after Triple-A teammate Miguel Olivo bit part of his ear off in a dugout incident Dodgers prospect Alex Guerrero is almost ready to resume playing.

General manager Ned Colletti told Mark Saxon of ESPN Los Angeles that Guerrero has reported to the Dodgers’ training facility in Arizona and will work on his conditioning there until he’s cleared for game action.

Guerrero required plastic surgery to re-attach the missing chunk from his ear after the since-released Olivo went insane in the middle of a game. At the time he was hitting .376 with 10 homers and a 1.152 OPS in 33 games and the 27-year-old Cuban defector who signed with the Dodgers for $28 million appeared on the verge of being called up to the big leagues.

At some point in the second half Guerrero could emerge as an option to replace Dee Gordon, who’s hit just .224 with a .299 on-base percentage and .345 slugging percentage in his last 45 games following a hot start.

The Cubs will try to clinch the NL Central on Tuesday

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The Cubs soundly defeated the Cardinals on Monday night, 10-2, sending their magic number down to one. They will try to clinch the NL Central on Tuesday with another win against the Cardinals. Alternatively, if they lose, they can still clinch if the Brewers also lose on Tuesday.

The Cubs, of course, won the Central last year en route to winning their first World Series since 1908. It wasn’t nearly as easy this year as the club was below .500 entering June and was exactly at .500 entering July. A 16-8 July, 17-12 August, and 15-8 September have helped put the Cubs back in position to return to the postseason.

Not to be forgotten, the Cardinals were eliminated from NL Central contention with Monday’s loss. Now they have their sights set on the second NL Wild Card slot and currently trail the Rockies in that race.

The matchups for Tuesday’s action:

Carter Capps to undergo surgery for thoracic outlet syndrome

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Dennis Lin of the San Diego Union Tribune reports that Padres pitcher Carter Capps will undergo surgery this offseason to address thoracic outlet syndrome, which doctors believe caused the right-hander’s blood clots. The Padres hope to have him ready by spring training next year.

Capps, 27, underwent Tommy John surgery last year and didn’t debut this season until August 7. He made 11 relief appearances, yielding nine runs on 12 hits and two walks with seven strikeouts in 12 1/3 innings. He went back on the DL on September 12 due to the blood clot issue.

The Padres acquired Capps from the Marlins last July in the Andrew Cashner trade which ended up having a lot of moving parts. Capps will enter his third and final year of arbitration eligibility this offseason. It’s quite possible the Padres choose to non-tender him.