- Associated Press - Thursday, March 10, 2011

GLENDALE, ARIZ. (AP) - Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher Jon Garland is expected to miss at least a month after straining his left side during a spring training game.

“The medical staff told me 30 to 35 days,” Dodgers general manager Ned Colletti said Thursday.

Garland hurt himself throwing a pitch Wednesday against Seattle and an MRI exam revealed a strained oblique muscle.

Garland was projected to be the fifth starter in the Dodgers‘ rotation. John Ely and Tim Redding are the top candidates to move into Garland’s spot while the right-hander is on the disabled list.

“If there’s a little bit of a silver lining, there’s still three weeks in camp,” Colletti said. “He might miss a turn or two. We’ll fill from within.”

The Dodgers were already minus pitcher Vicente Padilla. He might have moved into the starting rotation, but rehabilitation from elbow surgery is expected to sideline him until late April or early May.

Garland, 14-12 for San Diego last year and the Padres’ opening-day starter, has no history of oblique injuries, Colletti said. The Dodgers signed him to a one-year, $5 million contract.

“But you have to be careful,” Dodgers manager Don Mattingly said. “I’ve had it. For the first seven, eight days, you don’t want to turn the wrong way in bed, or cough or do anything that might affect it.”

The right-handed Ely made 18 starts as a Dodgers rookie last year. He went 4-10 with 5.49 ERA. In spring training, he has pitched six scoreless innings.

Redding, also a right-hander, saw his last major league duty in 2009 with the New York Mets. He finished last season in Korea.

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