Rafael Furcal Heads to the Bereavement List

Per Dodger Thoughts, Rafael Furcal has been placed on the bereavement list to tend to an ill family member in the Dominican Republic. Obviously, some things are more important than baseball, so Furcal has to do what he has to do. But man, is the timing brutal, because Furcal has been on fire – hitting .309/.356./545 with 2 homers in June, plus several sparkling plays in the field. It’s not exactly what you need when you’re headed into Boston with a patchwork rotation lined up, and it also means Blake DeWitt is leading off today. Still, it’s only for a few days, so hopefully all works out as well as possible for Furcal and his family.

That’s not really what interests me here, though: it’s that Chin-Lung Hu was recalled rather than Nick Green, who’d made it through waivers (shocker!) when he was DFA’d and has since returned to Albuquerque. Obviously, this is a good thing, because Hu’s a solid fielder, and Green’s all but worthless.

However, we’ve been here before, when Furcal went on the DL with his strained hamstring, and remember that was wasn’t supposed to be out nearly as long as he was, and it was Green who came up. This was Torre’s rationale at the time…

“He just brings more experience,” Manager Joe Torre said. “Probably a little more of a utility guy right now.

“My plan is still Carroll at shortstop. We’re freer to play Greenie at third and second, as opposed to Hu, who really would be in the middle only. Plus the fact that Hu should probably play every day.”

It’s not like Furcal’s replacement figures to see much playing time.

If Furcal was expected to be down longer, the Dodgers might have called Hu up. Torre said they never seriously considered Gordon, who is at double-A Chattanooga and is now considered a brighter prospect than Hu.

“And we’re talking probably about a week, so it’s probably in the best interest of the young kid not to disrupt him,” Torre said.

So what’s different now? Now it’s okay to disrupt Hu? It can’t just be that Green had an opt-out clause previously, because it’s already been proven that no one wants him. Clearly, I’m not complaining – Hu is better – it’s just an interesting piece of decision-making, is all.

Update: Okay, I guess it’s because Green opted out of his contract and is a free agent. I’d seen that he went 0-4 on Monday, so this must have just happened in the last day or two. What an amazingly poor choice on his part. Hooray!!

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  1. [...] pitching with a .320/.391/.540 (.931) line, and all eight of his homers, though he did miss a week while mourning the passing of his father. He was so good, in fact, that in July I ran the numbers and said he was the best shortstop in Los [...]