Carl Crawford could DH in Cactus League game on Sunday

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Carl Crawford is getting close to appearing in his first game as a member of the Dodgers.

According to Eric Stephen of True Blue L.A., Dodgers manager Don Mattingly said this morning that Crawford is tentatively scheduled to make his Cactus League debut tomorrow as the designated hitter against the Padres. That’s assuming he makes it through a minor league game this afternoon with no issues.

“He’s sore leg-wise today. He’s only going to get three at-bats today,” Mattingly said. “It’s really more of a first time he’s played soreness. If everything goes well with that and he comes tomorrow and is good, we’re going to DH him.”

Crawford, who is working his way back from Tommy John surgery, logged some at-bats on the minor league side on Thursday and Friday. He has also played catch the past two days, his first throwing since he was shut down late last month due to some tightness in his left forearm.

While Crawford is beginning to make progress, his status for the start of the season is in doubt. Skip Schumaker and Jerry Hairston, Jr. will likely share left field duties if he needs more time.

Masahiro Tanaka to throw off a mound this weekend

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Earlier this month Yankees starter Masahiro Tanaka strained both of his hamstrings while running the bases in an interleague game against the Mets and was sent to the 10-day DL. Today it was announced that the beginning of the end of most DL stints for pitchers — throwing off of a mound — is in Tanaka’s immediate future.

Tanaka is scheduled to throw off a mound Sunday, which will be his first real (well, fake real) pitching action since the June 9th injury. Assuming the session goes well, Tanaka is expected to return to the Yankees’ starting rotation sometime in early-to-mid July. With the All-Star break coming the week of July 16, it would not be hard to imagine the Yankees giving him a few extra days to get right.

Tanaka is 7-2 with a 4.58 ERA and a K/BB ratio of 73/19 in 72.2 innings on the season.