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Dodgers place Verdugo on IL with oblique strain

Negron may be King of nicknames on Players' Weekend
@kengurnick
August 6, 2019

LOS ANGELES -- The Dodgers on Tuesday placed outfielder Alex Verdugo on the injured list, optioned pitcher Tony Gonsolin to Triple-A Oklahoma City and recalled pitcher Caleb Ferguson and infielder Edwin Ríos. Verdugo has suddenly been stricken by a variety of injuries. He missed last Thursday’s game with left knee

LOS ANGELES -- The Dodgers on Tuesday placed outfielder Alex Verdugo on the injured list, optioned pitcher Tony Gonsolin to Triple-A Oklahoma City and recalled pitcher Caleb Ferguson and infielder Edwin Ríos.

Verdugo has suddenly been stricken by a variety of injuries. He missed last Thursday’s game with left knee soreness, was held out of Monday’s game with lower back stiffness and now has been diagnosed with a right oblique strain sustained on Sunday avoiding a ground ball while running the bases.

“It’s going to take the full 10 days and maybe a little bit longer,” said manager Dave Roberts. “Having had that issue, you’ve got to let it heal and then resume activities. We’re going to take our time and make sure it’s behind us.”

Gonsolin was optioned one day after he threw six scoreless innings in his Dodger Stadium debut, starting in place of the injured Hyun-Jin Ryu.

“With the off-days and the starting pitching we have, we’ll have him start for OKC Monday,” said Roberts. “He’s missed time this year with an oblique. This gives him time to log innings, a good option going forward. We expect him back soon.”

Rookies Gonsolin and Dustin May are in tryout mode for an October role. Gonsolin was a reliever until last year; May has been exclusively a starter. Roberts said both could fill either role but acknowledged Gonsolin’s experience pitching relief “definitely helps his case.”

May started for the Dodgers on Friday in place of Ross Stripling, who was scheduled to begin a Minor League rehab assignment on Tuesday. But that’s now delayed because Stripling awoke with a recurrence of a stiff neck, which led to the biceps tendinitis that put him on the injured list in the first place.

“He’ll resume throwing in the next few days,” Roberts said of Stripling.

Roberts said Ryu will return from the injured list on Sunday. The left-hander also has been out with a sore neck. Walker Buehler and Kenta Maeda will start Friday and Saturday.

Meanwhile, outfielder A.J. Pollock was out of the lineup for the fourth game in five days with a sore groin. Roberts said Pollock was available off the bench and might start on Wednesday.

Ferguson gives the Dodgers three left-handers in the bullpen, with Julio Urías and Adam Kolarek. Rios can play any of the corner positions.

Negron a Players’ Weekend standout

Players’ Weekend returns Aug. 23-25, and the Dodgers already have the early favorite for best nickname: Kristopher Negrón’s “Negron James.”

Every team's Players' Weekend nicknames

“I wish I remember the exact moment, but a lot of the Latin guys when I was coming up thought it was funny and they started calling me ‘Negron James,’” said Negron. “Then Ryan Ludwick, when I was with Cincinnati, heard it and started calling me that nonstop in 2014.”

Negron said he wanted to unveil the nickname on Players’ Weekend while he was with the D-backs, but he wasn’t in the big leagues.

“I have a jersey at the house but didn’t get to wear it in a game,” he said. “I hope this time. Knock on wood.”

Ken Gurnick has covered the Dodgers for MLB.com since 2001.