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Sunday, September 2, 2012
Mattingly says Billingsley is feeling better

By Arash Markazi

LOS ANGELES – Dodgers manager Don Mattingly admits he’s no doctor but he thinks there’s a chance pitcher Chad Billingsley could pitch again this season.

Billingsley received an injection of platelet-rich plasma (PRP) in his right elbow Thursday, and could get another one soon in the hopes of returning this season.

“Bills is feeling OK,” Mattingly said. “I just talked to Bills today and I haven’t talked to the doctors yet, but they’re talking about the possibility doing another PRP. He’s feeling better. He seemed a little bit optimistic today. What that means for him pitching for us before the end of the season, I don’t know. We’re not going to allow him to start throwing until he’s totally pain free.”

Billingsley went on the disabled list Saturday with inflammation in his elbow, his second stint on the DL for the injury this season. Platelet-rich plasma is an emerging treatment to help in the healing of tendons or ligaments without resorting to surgery. The Dodgers haven't ruled out the possibility that Billingsley will require Tommy John surgery, a procedure that would cost him most of the 2013 season as well.

“He feels better,” Mattingly said. “I don’t know what it means yet but he’s feeling better today.”

Billingsley is 10-9 with a 3.55 ERA this season. The former All-Star missed two weeks in July because of an elbow injury but was sensational in his last seven starts, going 6-0 with a 1.80 ERA during that stretch.

Here are the lineups for Sunday’s game against the Arizona Diamondbacks:

Chris Young CF
Aaron Hill 2B
Justin Upton RF
Jason Kubel LF
Paul Goldschmidt 1B
Miguel Montero C
Chris Johnson 3B
John McDonald SS
Wade Miley P

Mark Ellis 2B
Shane Victorino LF
Adrian Gonzalez 1B
Matt Kemp CF
Hanley Ramirez SS
Andre Ethier SS
Luis Cruz 3B
Matt Treanor C
Chris Capuano P