Dodgers taking it slow with Jansen, relievers

Key arms in bullpen are yet to appear in Cactus League

Dodgers taking it slow with Jansen, relievers

SCOTTSDALE, Az. -- Dodgers relievers Kenley Jansen, Sergio Romo, Grant Dayton and Adam Liberatore haven't pitched in a Cactus League game through Tuesday, but don't panic. They're fine.

For a variety of reasons, management has decided to ease them into action, and all could take the mound in a game by the end of the weekend.

Jansen, signed to an $80 million contract last month, hasn't missed a day of work. But Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said that considering his workload through last year's postseason and the lengthy Cactus League schedule this year, he doesn't need a February appearance. He has thrown live batting practice twice.

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Romo, despite pitching in only 40 games last year because of a right forearm flexor strain, pitched in winter ball and the Caribbean Series before signing with the Dodgers on Feb. 15. He also is scheduled to leave next week to pitch for Team Mexico in the World Baseball Classic.

Romo on joining rival Dodgers

Pitching coach Rick Honeycutt said Romo will likely pitch in two Cactus League games before leaving. As a tuneup, he threw one inning of live batting practice on Tuesday.

Also throwing live batting practice on Tuesday was Dayton, who pitched a combined 78 1/3 innings over 63 appearances between Double-A, Triple-A and the Ddogers last year. He appeared in 25 games for the Dodgers with a 2.05 ERA that made him the club's go-to left-hander out of the bullpen.

"He pitched a lot last year," Honeycutt said. "He'll be in a game in a few days."

Liberatore, who had season-ending elbow surgery last year, has already thrown live batting practice twice and bounced back fine, and Honeycutt said he also is likely to get in a game by next week.

Pedro Baez continues to nurse a bruised right thumb and hasn't been on a mound since suffering that injury on a comebacker while throwing live batting practice on Thursday.

Worth noting

Roberts also said that second-base prospect Willie Calhoun has not played in a game yet because he has been focusing on defense and conditioning, but he will see game action soon. The squatty Calhoun is a left-handed slugger, but there are concerns about whether he will find a position to play. He is working exclusively at second base this spring, although some scouts project him as an outfielder.

Ken Gurnick has covered the Dodgers for MLB.com since 2001. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.