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Dodgers catcher Brad Ausmus starts rehab assignment

July 7, 2010 |  9:22 pm
Brad Ausmus could be back sooner than expected.

The veteran catcher began a rehabilitation assignment Wednesday at Lake Elsinore, going one for two as the designated hitter with a walk for the Class-A Inland Empire 66ers. His hit was a single.

When Dodgers Manager Joe Torre spoke about Ausmus on Saturday, he said the catcher might start a rehab assignment after next week’s All-Star break.

Ausmus, who had back surgery in April, is expected back in the 66ers lineup on Thursday and is scheduled to catch three innings.

Rookie A.J. Ellis has been serving as Russell Martin’s backup while Ausmus has been on the disabled list. Martin has started all but seven of the Dodgers’ 84 games.

-- Steve Dilbeck