<
>

Corey Seager to get engine started in Freeway Series opener

GLENDALE, Ariz. -- It came down to the wire, yet all indications are that rookie Corey Seager will be the Los Angeles Dodgers' shortstop on Opening Day at San Diego.

Doubt remained after Seager sprained his left knee running the bases on March 11. He has not been in a Cactus League game since. The Dodgers have said all along that the schedule had Seager playing in a Cactus League game before the team broke camp.

That won’t happen, as manager Dave Roberts revealed that Seager will play in a minor league game Tuesday and have the day off Wednesday. The team will break camp after Wednesday’s game against the Cleveland Indians.

The good news for the club is that the talented young player is scheduled to start on the infield in the Freeway Series opener Thursday against the Los Angeles Angels. It is unclear how many Freeway Series games he will play. The season opener against the Padres is Monday, April 4.

Tuesday was Seager’s third consecutive day playing in a minor league game, a test of durability that convinced the Dodgers that their young shortstop is now ready to handle the rigors of the regular season.

“He’s going to have six innings of defense (in the minor league game) and we can kind of manipulate it to have him get four-to-six at-bats over there,” Roberts said.

Seager had three hits in 13 at-bats with a double in the early portion of the Cactus League schedule before the injury. Since he has returned, he’s had at least four at-bats in every minor league game he has played.

The Dodgers went as far as to have Seager hit in minor league games last week, even though he was not allowed to break hard out of the batter’s box.