LOS ANGELES (CBS) Rafael Furcal will soon return to the Dodgers lineup, perhaps as soon as Monday, moving the club ever closer to fielding an actual, healthy infield.

Furcal went down with a broken thumb after just seven games, depriving the Dodgers of their starting shortstop. Juan Uribe switched over from second base to fill in, but then third baseman Casey Blake followed Furcal to the DL a mere seven additional games later, causing Aaron Miles — who will just not go away — to not only make a big-league bench, but start. Miles and fellow backup infielder Jamey Carroll have been holding the fort down with Uribe, but now Uribe has his own injury issues, leaving Friday’s game with a strained hip flexor, with further word on the severity of his injury coming later Saturday.

The Los Angeles Times reports that the goal is to have Furcal back with the Dodgers when they open up a set with the Astros. So far on his rehab assignment, he’s already avoided another injury scare, banging up his left knee in a slide during Friday’s game but with no repercussions. The injury-prone shortstop is one of the best players in the game, but only when he can actually get on the field.

In other rehab news, Blake could join Triple-A early next week as he recovers from a staph infection in his left elbow.


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