Cody Bellinger spent time testing his injured right knee Tuesday at Dodger Stadium. He jogged back and forth in left field, never dialing it up to a sprint. A couple hours later, the Dodgers released their lineup and Bellinger wasn’t in it. Hardly a surprise a day after taking a 96-mph fastball off the knee.
Justin Turner’s omission was more mysterious. Turner played in the Dodgers’ win Monday, but he grimaced at points, most notably after hitting a single in the fifth inning. A day later, Dodgers manager Dave Roberts explained the source of his pain: Turner had fouled a ball off his left ankle in the batting cage before the game and compensating for the ankle created hamstring tightness.
“Today, could he play? Possibly,” Roberts said. “But to what end?”
Roberts said Turner and Bellinger could return to the lineup Wednesday. Turner didn’t undergo any tests. X-rays Monday night revealed no fractures in Bellinger’s knee.
“I’m hoping he’s in there,” Roberts said. “If it continues to respond well, he will be. If not, we’ll push it back.”
Bellinger has been the National League’s best player this season. The 2017 rookie of the year leads the league in batting average, on-base percentage, slugging percentage, home runs and runs batted in. He boasts three of the Dodgers’ four stolen bases and has supplied plus defense in the outfield and at first base.
Turner, meanwhile, is the Dodgers’ only position player without a home run. The 34-year-old third baseman is batting .302, but his only extra-base hits are two doubles. Slow starts in the power department are typical for Turner -- just two of his 93 career home runs have been hit in March or April.
Ryu to join rotation on road trip
Hyun-Jin Ryu will come off the 10-day injured list and pitch for the Dodgers at some point over the next week, Roberts said. Ryu is eligible to be activated Friday. He landed on the injured list April 9 after straining his left groin in a start against the St. Louis Cardinals the previous day.
Ryu usually doesn’t throw bullpen sessions, but he threw a 40-pitch session at Dodger Stadium on Monday. It went well enough for the Dodgers to decide to bypass a rehab start.
Once Ryu returns, Julio Urias will shift from the rotation to the bullpen after making his scheduled start Thursday against the Milwaukee Brewers. Roberts said the plan is for Ross Stripling to also move to the bullpen when Rich Hill comes off the injured list. Hill is slated to make a rehab start for Class-A Rancho Cucamonga on Wednesday.