The Los Angeles Dodgers entered the season with a crowded outfield, even after trading Matt Kemp to the San Diego Padres, and on June 1, they are searching for an outfielder.
Yasiel Puig and Carl Crawford haven’t played since April because of injury. Puig is expected to return in a couple weeks possibly, while Crawford was recently moved to the 60-day disabled list, putting him out at least another month. Andre Ethier, Alex Guerrero and Scott Van Slyke have held down the fort in the outfield, but Van Slyke has been slowed down by a back issue. He’s only appeared in one game since May 25, starting in Saturday’s victory over the St. Louis Cardinals.
On Tuesday, the Dodgers announced that Van Slyke would be placed on the 15-day disabled list. Outfielder Chris Heisey was recalled from Triple-A.
According to Dylan Hernandez of the LA Times, there was an official diagnosis:
Van Slyke diagnosed with mid-back inflammation.
— Dylan Hernandez (@dylanohernandez) June 2, 2015
Van Slyke is hitting .264 with a pair of home runs and 14 RBIs in 34 games. He hit just .203 in the month of May. He’s been dealing with the back issue for a couple of weeks, but his start on Saturday ended a string of four games without an appearance.
As for Heisey, this will be his fourth stint with the Dodgers in just two months. He’s played in five games (three starts) and has just one hit in nine at-bats. His OBP is at .429 thanks to five walks. Heisey gets the start in right field in Game 1 of Tuesday’s doubleheader.
Heisey will likely remain with the team until Van Slyke is activated from the DL, and then a dilemma will present itself. The 30-year-old will have five years of service time in the Majors, meaning he can refuse a minor-league assignment. It’s unknown whether Heisey would do so, but it’s possible.
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