Ryu could return to action before postseason

Lefty plays catch for second time in recovery from shoulder inflammation

Ryu could return to action before postseason

CHICAGO -- Dodgers manager Don Mattingly hasn't ruled out the possibility of Hyun-Jin Ryu pitching in a game during the next week, but Ryu will need to hurry in his recovery.

He played catch Sunday for the second time since receiving an injection in his inflamed left shoulder on Monday. But again Ryu threw about 60 feet at no more than 50 percent effort.

Mattingly has his rotation set for the final week of the regular season: Monday, Dan Haren; Tuesday, Zack Greinke; Wednesday, Clayton Kershaw; Thursday, off; Friday, Roberto Hernandez; Saturday, Haren; Sunday, Greinke.

"The only change," said Mattingly, "is if Hyun-Jin is able to do anything."

Assuming the Dodgers are still playing for the division title or home-field advantage in next weekend's series against Colorado, the only logical spot to use Ryu would be in Hernandez's spot on Friday, and it's doubtful Ryu will be ready that quickly.

An earlier clinching, however, would allow Mattingly to set up the rotation for the postseason and possibly use Ryu next Saturday or Sunday. Before pitching in a game, however, Ryu would need to throw a bullpen session and show the club that the inflammation doesn't return.

Ken Gurnick is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.