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Marlins will keep Ellis on shelf for 2 days

Backup catcher questionable for World Baseball Classic
MLB.com @JoeFrisaro

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. -- A strained left hamstring has shut down A.J. Ellis for the next two days, and while the Marlins are confident their backup catcher will be ready for Opening Day, his status for the World Baseball Classic is in question.

Miami is saying it's too early to tell about whether Ellis will be able to join Team USA. First, the club is waiting to see how he responds after no baseball activities on Wednesday and Thursday.

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. -- A strained left hamstring has shut down A.J. Ellis for the next two days, and while the Marlins are confident their backup catcher will be ready for Opening Day, his status for the World Baseball Classic is in question.

Miami is saying it's too early to tell about whether Ellis will be able to join Team USA. First, the club is waiting to see how he responds after no baseball activities on Wednesday and Thursday.

Ellis experienced tightness in his left hamstring while doing a baserunning drill on Tuesday. As a precaution, he was scratched from being the designated hitter on Tuesday in the Marlins' 3-1 loss to the Mets at Roger Dean Stadium.

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Initially, Ellis was scheduled to start for Miami on Wednesday against Houston at The Ballpark of the Palm Beaches.

Ellis, Christian Yelich and Giancarlo Stanton are on Team USA's roster, and they leave for workouts on Tuesday.

"Nobody wants to miss time," manager Don Mattingly said. "They want to continue progression. That's what we talk about down here. Any time you get an injury, it shuts you down and starts you back over. So nobody wants to do that. It's really more about the WBC than it is a concern for our season."

Worth noting: Ichiro Suzuki is expected to go through full workouts with the club on Thursday, a day later than initially anticipated.

"Really, no setbacks," Mattingly said. "He wants to be feeling ready, like he's good to go when he's out there, and be a part of everything. We're still totally in a good spot with him. Tomorrow, we feel like it will be full go."

Ichiro has been sidelined with a bruised right quadriceps and tight lower back since being involved in a collision with Brandon Barnes on Feb. 21.

Once Ichiro is back practicing without restrictions, he should be a few days away from playing in Grapefruit League games. Mattingly said Ichiro could be ready for Sunday's game against the Astros at Roger Dean Stadium.

Joe Frisaro has covered the Marlins for MLB.com since 2002. Follow him on Twitter @JoeFrisaro and listen to his podcast.

Miami Marlins, A.J. Ellis