The Los Angeles Dodgers are dealing with an increasingly delicate situation when it comes to former All-Star center fielder Matt Kemp.

Kemp was out of the starting lineup for the fifth straight game when the Dodgers played the Cincinnati Reds on Tuesday night. According to manager Don Mattingly, the team is waiting for Kemp to get comfortable taking fly balls in left field before putting him back on the field. In those five days, Kemp's contributions have been confined to one pinch-hit appearance.

Mattingly told Kemp he was no longer the team's center fielder after one particularly rough defensive night against the New York Mets at Citi Field on Thursday, according to sources. Four extra-base hits went over his head, contributing to all four Mets runs. Kemp also dropped a ball he picked up on the warning track to allow a run to score.

Kemp, an MVP runner-up in 2011, was openly grumbling about losing his starting job in the clubhouse the following day, according to the sources, making for a tense situation for some players.

Dodgers general manager Ned Colletti said he isn't concerned with the potential for clubhouse discord now that the former superstar is no longer playing every day. He said he and Mattingly were on the same page, that the Dodgers needed to do something to fix the outfield defense.

"We have a strong room," Colletti said. "I only care about one thing: winning. The Dodgers supersede everything. That's the way I think, and I think that's the way we should all be thinking about this."

Kemp did early work in left field Tuesday, but it's not clear how effective he will be in a reserve role, something he has never done. His agent, Dave Stewart, doesn't sound hopeful it will suit his client's skill set.

"In my experience as a player, that role was always filled by a veteran type of a guy. When I was coming up, it was a Manny Mota kind of guy, a special type of player who can handle that role," Stewart said. "Guys like Matt, who is 29, a former All-Star and almost an MVP, were never in a role like that.