By Kevin Baxter
10:20 PM EDT, September 7, 2013
CINCINNATI — Paco Rodriguez insists he's fine. So does Brian Wilson.
But the two relievers didn't look fine Saturday, combining to retire only two of the seven batters they faced and giving up the game-tying and game-winning runs in the Dodgers' 10-inning loss to the Cincinnati Reds.
"I have no pains, no aches, nothing," Rodriguez said. "It's just a matter of making quality pitches and I haven't done that."
Rodriguez, who was pitching at the University of Florida 16 months ago, has appeared in a team-high 69 games, throwing 50 innings. Last summer, between the majors and minors, he pitched only 192/3 innings.
"The only concern with Paco that we have probably is we've got to make sure that we take care of him," Manager Don Mattingly said. "Paco's in uncharted territory. Every day he pitches it's more than he ever pitched."
Rodriguez has given up two earned runs this month, more than he gave up in 36 consecutive appearances from early June through the end of August.
Mattingly is also worried about Wilson, who was shaking his right arm after walking Ryan Ludwick to start the 10th inning. After Wilson assured Mattingly and a trainer he was OK, he promptly gave up a stolen base and the game-winning single.
"I'm fine," Wilson said, adding that shaking an arm that has twice undergone Tommy John surgery was "what pitchers do."
Mattingly isn't so sure given that the run was the first Wilson has given up in nine games.
"He says fine. But we'll see," Mattingly said.
Sorting out the rotation
The Dodgers hope to get some good news about their battered rotation Sunday when Hyun-Jin Ryu tests his sore back with a between-starts bullpen session.
"It's getting a lot better," Ryu, who was scratched from his last start, said through an interpreter. "I need to gauge how I'm doing but I'm not worried."
Ryu is in line to rejoin the rotation Wednesday against Arizona but Mattingly is less confident about Chris Capuano, who took himself out of Friday's game in the second inning because of a recurring groin strain.
"He was smart enough just to stop. Hopefully, it's not something that's going to be major or really long term," Mattingly said.
With Edinson Volquez scheduled to start Tuesday, the Dodgers don't need Capuano until Sept. 15. If he's not ready by then, Mattingly said the start would likely go to right-hander Stephen Fife.
Center fielder Matt Kemp took what the Dodgers called 15 simulated at-bats Saturday at the team's training complex in Arizona but did not run. Kemp, who is trying to return from a sprained left ankle, had his rehab shut down Thursday after experiencing tightness in the right hamstring he strained in May. He will be reevaluated Sunday. ... First baseman Adrian Gonzalez matched a season high with four hits against the Reds.
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