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Capuano in postseason mix for lefty relief

LOS ANGELES -- The Dodgers have a lot of difficult decisions to make with their roster for the National League Division Series, and Chris Capuano is now an option for a role in the bullpen as a third left-hander.

Capuano pitched a scoreless inning in relief Friday against the Rockies, his first appearance since coming out of a start Sept. 6 with a strained left groin. Primarily a starter this season, Capuano could provide the Dodgers with short or long relief in October.

"My goal was to give them that option," Capuano said. "We've got a lot of power arms, a lot of talent vying for a few spots. It'll be interesting to see what happens. At least I accomplished my goal of giving them an option."

The next test for Capauno will come Sunday. Dodgers manager Don Mattingly said the club is hoping Capuano can bounce back and be available to pitch in the regular-season finale.

"If there's an opportunity to get me in there another time, I hope I can show them how I bounce back," Capuano said.

The Dodgers' bullpen is crowded without Capuano, though.

Closer Kenley Jansen is a given, as are left-handers Paco Rodriguez and J.P. Howell. Brian Wilson now appears to be the primary setup man, pushing Ronald Belisario down a notch. Carlos Marmol, rookie Chris Withrow and Brandon League are also vying for spots in what figures to be a seven-man 'pen.

"I think another lefty is a value," Mattingly said. "It depends who we're playing against."

The Dodgers will open the NLDS on Thursday in either Atlanta or St. Louis  

Austin Laymance is an associate reporter for Ken Gurnick is a reporter for
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