Kershaw Sent Down, Elbert Brought Up

Clayton Kershaw pitched his way right out of the majors after a terrible start against Washington, but only to clear a roster spot for another lefthander, Scott Elbert, who has sparkled for Jacksonville. Kershaw will be in Las Vegas just long enough to throw in the bullpen one day and then return to Los Angeles in time for his next scheduled start.

Because the Pacific Coast League season ends Monday, and because the 51s aren't playoff-bound, the rule stating that a player optioned to the minors must stay there a minimum of 10 days doesn't apply in this case.

"The only thing I can take from this is that I need to get back to what got me here," Kershaw said after the game in Washington. "What got me here was locating my fastball and putting people away with my curveball. I'm not saying I have gotten away from it, but it just hasn't worked the way it's supposed to.

"I'll pretty much try to focus during my bullpen on throwing strikes with my fastball and getting good break on my curveball."

"He'll be back out there in five days," Dodgers manager Joe Torre said.

Elbert, the Dodgers' first-round pick in 2004, gets a chance to pitch in The Show after posting a 2.40 ERA at Jacksonville this season, allowing just 22 hits in 41.1 innings. He struck out 46 and walked 20.

Elbert, 23, missed most of last season and the early part of 2008 with a shoulder injury that effectively turned him into a reliever, at least for now. He has made one start and 24 relief appearances with the Suns.

Tanyon Sturtze was told they would designate him for assignment to clear a roster spot for reliever Cory Wade. But then they changed their minds and released him.

The move, and the release of infielder Pablo Ozuna, cleared two 40-man spots, one of which will be filled by activating reliever Scott Proctor and calling up catcher A.J. Ellis when his contract is purchased from Triple-A Las Vegas.

The club will need to clear 40-man spots for Rafael Furcal and Jason Schmidt if, and that's a big if, they come back anytime this season. Players on the 15-day DL count against the 40-man roster, while players on the 60-day do not.

Reliever Cory Wade was activated after spending time on the disabled list and was tagged for a homer in the final game of the Washington series.

Wade was 2-1 with a 2.56 ERA in 40 appearances when he was placed on the DL on August 14, retroactive to August 9, with right shoulder inflammation.  The 25-year-old rookie made one rehabilitation appearance, tossing a scoreless inning on Monday for the Dodgers' Single-A Great Lakes club.

Wade had worked more innings (52.2) than any Dodgers reliever from the time he was recalled from Las Vegas on April 24 to the time he was placed on the DL.  He ranks fifth in ERA among rookie relievers.

Blake DeWitt was recalled from Las Vegas where he was sizzling over the final few games, collecting 11 hits in 19 trips to the plate. He saw his first action, bouncing out to end the final game in Washington.