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Billingsley to have surgery, done for the year

Wounded Dodgers pitching staff takes another blow when injury ends Chad Billingsley's season.

The Dodgers received some bad news on Tuesday when the club revealed that Chad Billinglsey will undergo Tommy John surgery on Wednesday and is expected to miss 12 months.


After an up-and-down 2012, Billingsley finally started to show signs of the player the Dodgers signed to a three-year, $35-million deal before the start of last season. From July 23 to Aug. 19 of last year Billingsley went on a tear, going 6-0 with a 1.30 ERA in 41 2/3 innings pitched. The next game, however, Billingsley aggravated the same elbow that landed him on the DL and he went on to miss the final month of last season.


This offseason, Billingsley avoided Tommy John surgery and underwent injections of platelet-rich plasma and rehab, and was confident after experiencing no issues this spring.


On Sunday, Billinglsey, who started the season on the disabled list with a bruised finger, joined Zack Greinke (broken collarbone) and Chris Capuano (calf) as the third starting pitcher to head to the DL in a nine-day span after experiencing pain and tightness in his elbow.


Suddenly that stacked starting rotation is starting to look bleak.


The Dodgers, who have lost sixth straight and are five games back of the NL West-leading Rockies, opened spring training with eight starting pitchers, and on Wednesday - when Ted Lilly returns from the DL - only three of those pitchers will be on the roster.


This season Billingsley was 1-0 with a 3.00 ERA in two starts. He's 81-61 in his eight-year-career with a 3.65 ERA for the Dodgers. Stephen Fife, who was 0-2 with a 2.70 ERA  last season, will get the start for Billingsley on Sunday in Baltimore.


Here's the tweet released by the Dodgers: