Spring Camp Opens at Camelback

Senior Editor
Posted Feb 21, 2012

The day is finally here! Pitchers and catchers have reported to Dodgers' spring training camp at Camelback Ranch. Here are some news and notes from Day 1.

-In the easiest move of the new year, manager Don Mattingly named Clayton Kershaw as the team's opening day starter. Kershaw, coming off his first Cy Young award, will be making his second straight opening day start for the club.

-Mattingly also announced a few decisions on the batting order. Incumbent shortstop Dee Gordon will be batting leadoff, with center fielder Matt Kemp slated to hit third. Gordon hit .315 in 209 plate appearances from the leadoff spot with the Dodgers last season. Kemp, who spent most of his time hitting cleanup in 2011, batted an impressive .331/.418/.647 in the 158 plate appearances in the #3 spot last year. Mattingly also suggested that Kemp would be protected by Andre Ethier or Juan Rivera. Looks like Jerry Sands is going to play the role of the underdog once again this spring.

-Mattingly also alluded to Javy Guerra as being the closer heading into the spring.

-Blake Hawksworth, coming back from offseason surgery, hit a snag in his rehab when he suffered an infection that required additional surgery. He likely won't be ready for opening day.

-We have a Ronald Belisario sighting! The elusive righthander was spotted at the Ranch but couldn't speak to media as he was on his way to a dental appointment.

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