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J.D. Martinez scratched from Dodgers lineup with continued groin & hamstring tightness

Martinez headed back to LA for MRI exam

MLB: Los Angeles Dodgers at Texas Rangers Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

J.D. Martinez was once again scratched from the Dodgers lineup, this time on Tuesday’s series opener against the Diamondbacks at Chase Field in Phoenix. Martinez is still dealing with tightness in his left hamstring and groin, which has plagued him for the last two and a half weeks.

Martinez was originally slotted fifth in the Dodgers lineup at designated hitter, but was a late scratch. Kiké Hernández is now starting at third base, batting seventh, with cleanup hitter Max Muncy now the DH.

This first came up on Sunday, July 23, the series finale against the Rangers in Texas. He was scratched from the lineup that day, then ruled out the next day on Monday, July 24 when the Dodgers were at home.

Martinez technically started on Sunday, July 30 against the Reds, but was pinch-hit for in the second inning in what would have been his first at-bat. He didn’t play any of the three games against the A’s, but then returned as a pinch-hitter Friday night in San Diego, drawing a bases-loaded walk in the Dodgers’ winning rally in the eighth inning.

After starting Saturday and Sunday against the Padres, Martinez had a planned off day in Monday afternoon’s series finale. Manager Dave Roberts on the last homestand mentioned the Dodgers would monitor Martinez, as he had trouble getting ready for day games.

If Martinez isn’t available to pinch-hit on Tuesday, that will mean he’s only batted 27 times in the last 15 games, effectively starting only six of those games. He has five hits in 24 at-bats during that span with two doubles and a home run, hitting .208/.296/.417.

On the season, Martinez is hitting .260/.312/.558 with 26 home runs and a 129 wRC+, ranking fifth in the National League in slugging percentage and sixth in RBI (76).

Martinez will miss at least Wednesday’s game as well as he headed back to Los Angeles, with an MRI and injection in his future.