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Ethier likely to be pinch hitter in NLDS

The SportsXchange

Andre Ethier will be limited to pinch-hitting duties at the start of the National League Division Series, the Los Angeles Dodgers outfielder said Tuesday.

A left ankle injury hampered Ethier over the past month, limiting him to one at-bat after Sept. 13.

"It's probably just a hitting role, that's what our best hope is," Ethier said of his outlook for the series against the Braves that begins Thursday in Atlanta. "Who knows, maybe we wake up Saturday and Sunday and it feels good enough to go (back to outfield duty). Hitting-wise it feels good enough.

"We'll worry about what to do after I get on first base then. I just want to figure out a way to contribute any way I can and not become a hindrance."

In 142 games this year, Ethier hit .272 with a .360 on-base percentage, a .423 slugging percentage, 12 homers and 52 RBIs.

The Dodgers enter the postseason without outfielder Matt Kemp, who is sidelined due to a left ankle injury. An MRI found swelling in the bone area. Doctors determined the swelling rendered the ankle susceptible to a complete break if Kemp continued to play before the injury is completely healed.
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