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McCarthy earns No. 4 spot in rotation

MLB.com @kengurnick

PEORIA, Ariz. -- Brandon McCarthy battled back from Tommy John surgery and a case of the yips to reclaim his spot in the starting rotation, Dodgers manager Dave Roberts announced on Wednesday.

McCarthy will be the Dodgers' fourth starter behind Clayton Kershaw, Kenta Maeda and Rich Hill. Hyun-Jin Ryu, sidelined for two years by shoulder and elbow operations, will be the fifth starter.

PEORIA, Ariz. -- Brandon McCarthy battled back from Tommy John surgery and a case of the yips to reclaim his spot in the starting rotation, Dodgers manager Dave Roberts announced on Wednesday.

McCarthy will be the Dodgers' fourth starter behind Clayton Kershaw, Kenta Maeda and Rich Hill. Hyun-Jin Ryu, sidelined for two years by shoulder and elbow operations, will be the fifth starter.

Roberts added that Alex Wood, a finalist for the rotation, would share the long relief role with Ross Stripling. Rounding out the bullpen are closer Kenley Jansen, set-up man Sergio Romo, Grant Dayton, Luis Avilan and Chris Hatcher.

While neither McCarthy nor Ryu have been proven to pitch deep into games, Roberts said having two starting pitchers as long relievers gives the Dodgers "coverage."

With the pitching staff set, the Dodgers still have bench spots remaining to be finalized. Austin Barnes has been competing with non-roster invitee Bobby Wilson for the back-up catching job, but no decision has been announced.

The back-up infielder spot is still unsettled because of the bruised right wrist suffered by Enrique Hernandez in Tuesday's game at Goodyear when hit by a Scott Feldman pitch. X-rays were negative, but Hernandez had the wrist wrapped on Wednesday to limit swelling and said he would try to bat on Thursday.

"We've got to see how he feels tomorrow," Roberts said of Hernandez. "If there's days that go by that he can't swing a bat, that could change things."

If the Dodgers are not comfortable that Hernandez will be ready by Opening Day, Chris Taylor would be the backup shortstop based on a huge Cactus League. If Taylor is on the team, Scott Van Slyke also probably will be because of his ability to play center field and bat right-handed. When healthy, Hernandez can play both shortstop and center field.

Roster trimmed

The Dodgers trimmed the roster before leaving Arizona on Wednesday, sending out seven players. Infielder Rob Segedin was optioned and reassigned were outfielders Tyler Holt and O'Koyea Dickson, pitcher Brandon Morrow, first basemen Cody Bellinger and Ike Davis, and infielder Charlie Culberson.

Ken Gurnick has covered the Dodgers since 1989, and for MLB.com since 2001.

Los Angeles Dodgers, Brandon McCarthy