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Trips to the DL up 28 percent from last season

For some Major League teams this season, the disabled list has been a crowded place.

As of Monday, there has been a 28 percent increase from last year in injuries requiring DL stints, and a 55 percent increase over the 2010 campaign, according to a USA Today report. MLB clubs have used the DL 539 times, including 118 players on the 60-day DL.

Since MLB started tracking DL-related transactions in 2002, no season has seen so many players sidelined by injury.

"It's been brutal this year," Blue Jays president Paul Beeston told USA Today. "As an industry, we have to look at why this is happening."

The Royals have lost four pitchers -- Joakim Soria, Danny Duffy, Felipe Paulino and Blake Wood -- for the season to Tommy John surgery. Toronto hurlers Drew Hutchison and Kyle Drabek also suffered elbow injuries.

The Nationals lost catcher Wilson Ramos for the season to a torn ACL. Outfielder Jayson Werth missed about three months with a broken left wrist and Michael Morse was shelved for the first two months with a strained lat. All-Star shortstop Ian Desmond is slated to return Friday from a left oblique strain.

As the Nationals finally round into form, they must decide when to shut down ace Stephen Strasburg, who they stress will not be overworked, as the right-hander underwent Tommy John surgery late in the 2010 campaign.

The Red Sox have lost center fielder Jacoby Ellsbury, left fielder Carl Crawford and second baseman Dustin Pedroia for extended periods of time this season. Pitcher John Lackey is out for the year following elbow surgery, and Daisuke Matsuzaka and Andrew Bailey have been limited. Last week, third baseman Will Middlebrooks suffered a broken right wrist when he was struck by an errant fastball from Indians reliever Esmil Rogers.

"Everyone is looking around asking if we're doing something wrong," said Dr. Lewis Yocum, the Angels' team doctor. "I don't think it's a training or conditioning thing. It seems like we just go through cycles."