Ramirez appears healthy in return to lineup

DENVER -- Here’s some relief for Dodgers fans: shortstop Hanley Ramirez's strained left calf and aggravated right shoulder appeared healthy in the team’s 3-2 win over the Colorado Rockies on Thursday night.

Well, at least they appeared to be somewhat healthy. After speculation that Ramirez would most likely end up on the disabled list Thursday, Ramirez instead returned to the lineup and carved out two walks in four plate appearances before he was replaced by rookie Erisbel Arruebarrena for defensive purposes in the eighth inning.

“I can still help this team win games,” Ramirez said.

On Thursday, though, it was starting pitcher Zack Greinke who took much of the spotlight, going eight innings while giving up only two runs. And Juan Uribe took most of the rest of the work, collecting three hits, including the game-winning single in the top of the ninth inning.

Ramirez, meanwhile, made it clear that he’s happy the team is winning. And although his offensive production has dipped -- dipped in the most plunging sense of the word, going from a batting average of .345 in 86 games last year to an average of .269 in 77 games this year -- Ramirez assured reporters Thursday that he wasn’t worried about it.

"The past is the past. I never think about the past,” he said. “I don't care what people think. The only thing I care about is winning games. Numbers, at the end of the year, they're going to be there.”

Ramirez, who will turn 31 in December, will be a free agent after the season. His health and production from here on out will likely be a huge factor in the kind of contract he’ll be offered.

Dodgers manager Don Mattingly, who was pleased with Ramirez’s performance on Thursday, said his shortstop will be in and out of the lineup heading into the All-Star break.