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Mookie Betts back on injured list with right hip inflammation

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Pitcher Edwin Uceta will be activated from the IL

MLB: AUG 07 Angels at Dodgers Photo by Brian Rothmuller/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

The Dodgers on Wednesday placed Mookie Betts on the 10-day injured list with a right hip inflammation, the second time this injury has sidelined the star outfielder in the last three weeks.

Betts will fly back to Los Angeles Wednesday night, and meet with doctors on Thursday for further testing.

Betts last played on Saturday, one day after leaving a game in the sixth inning with hip discomfort. He got a scheduled day off Sunday, and Monday was a travel day for the Dodgers. Betts was in the starting lineup for Tuesday’s series opener, but was a late scratch, after Dave Roberts held his pregame Zoom scrum.

Roberts later told reporters on site in Philadelphia that an injured list stint for Betts was likely. From Mark Feinsand at MLB.com:

“Just achy, sore; basically can’t play,” manager Dave Roberts said. “I don’t know what other tests we’re going to do, but to envision an IL happening, it’s very probable. ... I’m frustrated for Mookie, because he wants to go out there and he can’t physically do it.”

Roberts on Wednesday added Betts’ hip feels the same as Tuesday.

“As far as symptomatically, it is what it is. It’s difficult for him to navigate and move around. We’re making this move because we still have to have a functional roster,” Roberts said. “To get him some rest, that’s the next, no-brainer step for us.”

Hip discomfort has bothered Betts all season, among the myriad of nagging injuries that contributed to what by Betts’ standards was an underwhelming first half. He was also good enough to be named an All-Star by his peers, though Betts opted not to play in the midsummer classic, instead using the four days off to rest his various maladies.

Dodgers-Phillies lineups

Pos Dodgers Pos Phillies
Pos Dodgers Pos Phillies
2B Turner 2B Segura
1B Muncy (L) C Realmuto
C Smith RF Harper (L)
SS Seager (L) LF McCutchen
3B Taylor 1B Bohm
CF Bellinger (L) SS Gregorius (L)
LF Pollock 3B Torreyes
RF Beaty (L) CF Herrera (L)
P Price (L) P Gibson

The hip issues were exacerbated by two days of running in the spacious outfield at Coors Field. That limited Betts to just one plate appearance over the next 13 games, including his first injured list stint in three years.

Upon his return from the IL, Betts played three games at second base before returning to right field. Roberts has mentioned the word “governor” many times over the last few weeks, saying that Betts be judicious with his running whenever possible, as an effort to keep his hip discomfort manageable.

Betts said his hip problems really only affects him when running, which is obviously a huge part of his game, both on the bases and on the field. But despite the pain, he’s still been able to hit. Since the All-Star break, Betts is 15-for-31 (.484/.500/1.000) with four home runs and four doubles.

But he’s only played in eight of the Dodgers’ 22 games since the break, and now with this IL stint he will miss at least seven more games. The Dodgers backdated Betts’ IL move to Sunday, meaning his earliest return date is August 18.

“We’re absolutely hopeful that he’ll be back with us [once the 10 days are up],” Roberts said. “I just don’t want to put anybody in a corner on when his time to return is.”

Roberts said pitcher Edwin Uceta will be activated from the injured list as the corresponding move for Betts, putting the roster at 14 pitchers and 12 position players.

Matt Beaty starts in right field for the Dodgers on Wednesday.