As if the first two games against the Pittsburgh Pirates over the weekend weren’t frustrating enough, the Los Angeles Dodgers lost Howie Kendrick to a strained hamstring in the fifth inning of Sunday’s 13-6 loss to the Pirates, which gave them a series sweep of the Dodgers.
Kendrick immediately grabbed at his left hamstring after a final lunge in attempt to beat out an infield single. He was removed from the game without trying to stretch the hamstring out or walk it off — perhaps an early indication of the severity of the strain.
The 32-year-old second baseman is expected to undergo an MRI on Monday, which presumably will be followed by a stint on the disabled list. Kendrick expressed some of his frustration with the injury and likened it to his 2008 hamstring issue with the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim , via Ken Gurnick of MLB.com
It just grabbed,” Kendrick said. “I saw the play, had a chance to get a hit and instincts take over. I tried to kick it into another gear and it grabbed. And it stinks, because this is the time of year you want to be on the field, not off the field. You want to try to help the team win and put the team in a spot to win games, and there I was hustling and it came back to bite me. … “Very similar,” he said. “Don’t expect to see me playing tomorrow. I’ve got to get in the gym, working and getting back on the field.”
While Kendrick isn’t expected to play Monday night, the Dodgers will need to push along as they open a three-game set with the Washington Nationals at Dodger Stadium. Manager Don Mattingly acknowledged Kendrick’s absence leaves a significant void and didn’t yet have the name of a replacement, though mentioning Kiké Hernandez as an option:
It’s a big void,” Mattingly said. “Howie is bread and butter, a leader, a big part of us. Basically, a big chunk of us. I don’t know exactly who we’ll bring. We’ll talk on the plane tonight. Kiké swung the bat well against a righty tonight and deserves a chance to play. We’ll talk about our different options.”
Along with Hernandez, who has been a super-utility player for the Dodgers this season, the club can turn to Jose Peraza. The highly-touted prospect was acquired in the trade with the Atlanta Braves and is batting .385/.415/.590 in 10 games with Triple-A Oklahoma City. Alberto Callaspo also has some experience at second base over his 10-year career.