From Dylan Hernandez of the Los Angeles Times …
The latest injury to strike the Dodgers is literally a pain in the rear.
A strained right buttock muscle forced starting pitcher Hyun-Jin Ryu to make a sixth-inning departure from the Dodgers’ 3-2 defeat to the Atlanta Braves on Wednesday night at Turner Field.
While Ryu said he didn’t think the injury was serious, he acknowledged he didn’t know if he could take his next turn in the rotation.
Ryu will visit with team physician Dr. Neal ElAttrache on Thursday night, after the Dodgers return home from their four-game series in Atlanta. An MRI is planned.
Ryu allowed three earned runs over 5 2/3 innings Wednesday as Los Angeles fell to Atlanta 3-2. But the Dodgers still boast a five-game lead over the second-place Giants in the National League West.
Ryu has a 3.28 ERA, 1.19 WHIP, and 122/27 K/BB ratio in 137 1/3 innings (23 starts) this season.
The Dodgers have reinstated first baseman Adrian Gonzalez from the 60-day disabled list after his recovery from a herniated disc. To make room for him they have optioned Rob Segedin to Triple-A Oklahoma City.
Gonzalez last played on June 11. Since then the Dodgers have gone an astounding 46-9, with shoe-in rookie of the year candidate Cody Bellinger handling first base duties and posting a .978 OPS. When Gonzalez went down he was hitting .255/.304/.339 and only one homer in 49 games.
It’ll be interesting to see what kind of playing time he gets going forward. The Dodgers, of course, have a comfortable lead in the NL West, so they could afford to allow Gonzalez to play a good bit to see if his bat sharpens up while simultaneously giving Bellinger, who has never played more than 137 games in a season, a bit of a breather. Beyond that, though, the Dodgers ain’t broke, so it’s hard to see why anyone would want to tinker with things.
The Tampa Bay Rays have activated outfielder Kevin Kiermaier from the 60-day disabled list.
Kiermaier, who fractured his hip in early June, is batting leadoff and playing center field in tonight’s game against the Mariners. He was just 3-for-24 on his rehab assignment, but those aren’t usually predictive of anything. He was hitting .258/.329/.408 when he went down. Getting his bat — and, more importantly, his glove — back in the lineup will boost the struggling Rays in their quest for a playoff spot.