Carl Crawford to skip Australia series

Updated: March 15, 2014, 2:37 PM ET
By Mark Saxon | ESPNLosAngeles.com

GLENDALE, Ariz. -- Los Angeles Dodgers left fielder Carl Crawford will not travel with the team for two games in Australia next weekend so he can attend the birth of his third child, manager Don Mattingly said Saturday.

[+] EnlargeCarl Crawford
AP Photo/Paul SancyaCarl Crawford will miss the Dodgers' season-opening series in Australia to attend the birth of his child.

"At this point, Carl's not going," Mattingly said.

Crawford's fiancé, Evelyn Lozada, is expecting a baby boy any day now.

Lozada is a former reality TV star who was once married to NFL wide receiver Chad Ochocinco. Crawford has two children from a previous relationship.

Crawford will be placed on paternity leave, allowing the Dodgers to have 28 other players on their roster for the two Australia games against the Arizona Diamondbacks.

Three of those players would be ineligible to play but could be activated for Los Angeles' North American opener in San Diego on March 30. Pitchers Zack Greinke and Dan Haren, who are also not traveling to Australia, will be two of those three exempt players.

With Matt Kemp beginning the season on the disabled list as he recovers from ankle surgery, the Dodgers likely will use Scott Van Slyke in left field in the two Australian games against the Diamondbacks. Los Angeles also likely will bring outfielder Mike Baxter and one more outfielder, likely either Nick Buss or Joc Pederson.

Mark Saxon

ESPNLosAngeles.com
Mark Saxon is a staff writer for ESPNLosAngeles.com. He spent six years at the Orange County Register, and began his career at the Oakland Tribune, where he started an 11-year journey covering Major League Baseball. He has also covered colleges, including USC football and UCLA basketball.

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