Who Will Be Summoned From the Minors?

When Elmer Dessens comes off the disabled list on Friday, it seems like at this juncture that James Loney will be the odd man out since Grady Little has indicated that he'd like a 12-man pitching staff. This, despite the fact that James has been hitting over .300 since being recalled.

His stay at Las Vegas will be brief, though. When the rosters expand, Sept. 1, expect James to be among the first to be summoned to L.A. And just who is likely to accompany him?

That's something that Little and Ned Colletti will be discussing during the next road trip. There are two basic reasons for September recall- the first is to add help for the stretch run, the second is to get a glimpse of what the future may hold.

Considering that the first reason is the compelling one for the Dodgers these days, those called up may be limited. For example, how about Andy LaRoche ? He's doing well at Las Vegas; he seems about ready and certainly is chock full of promise. But do you bring him up to play third? Not a chance, the way Wilson Betemit is going.

You can be assured Hong-Chi Kuo will get a call. He's been very strong ever since they returned him to starting . Getting the ball over was his problem in his big league stints before but he's been in the zone with the 51's. So, he'll come back but not to start games. No, maybe down the road that will be what he does in the bigs but right now his assignment will be a lefty in the bullpen.

D. J. Houlton has been throwing much better lately, too, but if he's brought in, it will be to help out in the 'pen, also. Others, who are currently operating in relief who could get a call are Tim Hamulack and Lance Carter. Hamulack has been quietly doing the job in middle relief while Carter has become the 51's closer. Carter, however was outrighted so is not on option. That would mean reshuffling for roster room, something the Dodgers might not care to do at this time.

Certainly, the newly acquired Einar Diaz will be brought up. Adding an extra catcher is customary at this time and that's the reason they got him from the Indians, not to help out at Las Vegas. He has the experience required for the job. Incidentally, he's already on the 40-man so may be recalled.

Greg Miller has been throwing better of late so will get some consideration if they feel they'd like still one more lefty. Franquelis Osoria, though, seems to be a forgotten man.

Matt Kemp seems to be a cinch to be among those brought in. He's hitting well (though he has only one home run), and can help in a lot of ways- as a defensive replacement in the outfield, a pinch hitter or a pinch runner, for that matter. D. Y. Young is in the same sort of position as LaRoche is although he'd bring some desired pop if brought in.

All of the above are at Las Vegas. Jacksonville doesn't appear to have anybody that will be called. They're in the playoffs, for one thing, but mainly, it's because no one there is deemed ready. Surely, pitchers Spike Lundberg and Casey Hoorelbeke are having superlative seasons but their addition to the roster will be decided in the off-season, not now.