Mookie Betts is out of the Dodgers lineup for their series finale against the Mariners, one day after getting hit by a pitch in the ninth inning on Monday. But X-rays were negative, and he isn’t expected to be placed on the injured list.
“We dodged a bullet there,” manager Dave Roberts said Tuesday.
Betts was hit on the inner part of his right forearm by a 94.5-mph fastball from Seattle closer Rafael Montero, though he stayed in the game to run. Betts is sore today, Roberts said, and would likely only be used as a pinch-runner if he is used at all.
“He’s still getting treatment right now. I just want to make sure that the training staff feels good about it, and he feels good about it,” Roberts said. “I think as far as a pinch-run if the situation made sense, certainly shouldn’t be a problem. I just don’t know how the throwing would be, let alone swinging the bat.”
With Betts out on Tuesday, Zach McKinstry starts in right field, and Chris Taylor gets the call in center field while batting leadoff. Max Muncy, after his first day off of the season, starts at second base on Tuesday, with the left-handed Edwin Ríos starting at first base against Mariners left-hander Marco Gonzales.
Ríos is off to a 4-for-29 (.138/.286/.241) start this season. That includes 0-for-8 against left-handers, though with only one strikeout against southpaws.
“He hasn’t gotten the results, but the walk last night, and I thought he barreled a couple balls as well,” Roberts said of Ríos. “I actually liked this matchup against Gonzales. His head’s in a good place, and just trying to keep him current as far as taking at-bats.”
The DH being used — Will Smith starts there Tuesday — plus Betts being limited and possibly out effectively leaves the Dodgers with only two bench players — Luke Raley and Sheldon Neuse. The team is currently carrying 14 pitchers and 12 position players. Whether that continues after Wednesday’s off day depends on Betts’ health.
“Assuming Mookie is fine, I think it’ll be status quo,” Roberts said. “Certainly things could change, but I would think we’ll stay the course.”
The Mariners activated center fielder Kyle Lewis, last year’s American League Rookie of the Year, from the injured list after he missed the season’s first 17 games with a bone bruise in his right knee. Lewis starts in center and bats second on Tuesday. Seattle optioned outfielder Braden Bishop to make room on the roster.
Teams: Dodgers at Mariners
Location: T-Mobile Park, Seattle
Time: 1:10 p.m. PT
TV: SportsNet LA, MLB Network (out of market)