CLEVELAND — The Dodgers are hoping rest in August will have J.D. Martinez ready for October.
Los Angeles placed the designated hitter on the injured list Tuesday with groin tightness, and expect him to be sidelined for several weeks.
The team made the move with the All-Star hitter before opening a three-game series against the Guardians. Manager Dave Roberts said Martinez has been affected by lingering pain and the team felt the only remedy was for him to stop playing completely.
“On certain swings it didn’t affect him, but when he would stride out a little further that’s when it gets him,” Roberts said. "He’s pretty adamant that it’s not the back, but regardless it was impeding his swing.
"The one thing we haven’t done is just quit activity and hopefully that can knock it out.”
The 36-year-old Martinez has been out since Saturday. He recently underwent an MRI and an epidural injection while being slowed by hamstring tightness and a lower back issue.
Martinez is batting .256 with 25 homers and 78 RBIs in 92 games. But he’s been struggling since the All-Star break. He hit his 300th career home run in June.
“He just was compromised with his swing,” Roberts said. “He tried to play through it, but it was just something where we felt he wasn’t going to be able to perform at his or our expectations, so IL made sense.”
Roberts said Martinez will not do any hitting for at least one week before he's re-evaluated.
As for when the 36-year-old will be back, Roberts said that's impossible to predict.
“I think the hope is that it gets cleared up," Roberts said. "This should do it. The question is how long is the timetable and I don’t think anyone knows right now.”
To fill the roster spot, the NL West-leading Dodgers recalled infielder Michael Busch from Triple-A Oklahoma City.
Busch was in the lineup at DH on Tuesday against the Guardians. Roberts said he'll use Max Munday in that role on Wednesday.