LOS ANGELES — Adrian Gonzalez is on the disabled list for the first time in his career, and the Dodgers plan to take however long he needs to get fully healthy.
“Adrian is on a slow program,” manager Dave Roberts said. “He’s getting a massage, relaxing the mind, the body. He’s recuperating right now. When he’s ready to do baseball activities, he’ll be back. Right now, I like the slow program.”
Gonzalez was placed on the disabled list on Friday with soreness in his right elbow, which plagued him since spring training, and has also been dealing with a herniated disc in his back.
He was hitting .255/.327/.309 with no home runs in 29 games.
Gonzalez averaged 159 games played per season from 2006-16, never playing in fewer than 156 games in a season. He played in the Dodgers’ first 29 games this season before he was placed on the DL.
If the Dodgers were short on players, the club and Gonzalez would consider speeding up his rehab. But with Cody Bellinger filling in as capably as he has — hitting .326/.392/.717 with five home runs in his first 12 games — Gonzalez has the time to fully let his elbow heal before returning.
“Once his 10 days is up, if we need to ramp it up because of some unforeseen circumstance he’s willing to do that. But right now, let’s use it to the best of what we can, and that’s what he wants to do. We feel comfortable with that,” Roberts said. “We kind of eliminated the calendar. It’s more referring to his body and how he feels.”