Kike Hernandez/Photo courtesy of Los Angels Dodgers
Kike Hernandez on Sunday became the latest member of the Dodgers to go down with a hamstring injury. He strained his left hamstring running out a ground ball in the eighth inning of the Dodgers’ 2-0 loss at the hands of the Chicago Cubs and Jake Arrieta, who threw a no-hitter.
Hernandez joins second baseman Howie Kendrick and right-fielder Yasiel Puig on the shelf with hamstring strains.
“I don’t know exactly what his status is, I do know he strained his hamstring and he’s going to be at least a few days,” Dodgers manager Don Mattingly said Monday before the first-place Dodgers took on the rival second-place Giants in Game 1 of a three-game series.
Holding court with reporters, Mattingly went on to say that Hernandez could be out a couple of weeks. Not long after, the Dodgers announced they had placed Hernandez on the 15-day disabled list and recalled catcher Austin Barnes, who was going to be recalled Tuesday anyway when rosters can expand to 40 players. Yet, the move makes sense because playing a man short in such a crucial series even for a day could be ill-advised.
Hernandez recently replaced Joc Pederson as the starting centerfielder, but started at third base Sunday to give Justin Turner some rest. It’s a tough loss because Hernandez was really coming into his own with a .308 batting average – .353 with runners in scoring position.
As for the rash of hamstring injuries, Mattingly suggested things like this run in cycles.
“I’ve been involved with different teams over the years,” he said. “One year it’s the obliques, one year it’s something else. This year for us, we’ve got some hamstrings. I think at that point everyone evaluates what we’re doing, how we’re doing it.
“The same way when your team’s not hitting, you’re going to into it and look at it, you know, ‘What are we doing, what do we need to do better?’ So I know medical is trying to evaluate themselves and make sure they’re not missing anything.”