Strained groin sends Olivo to disabled list
Catcher's hitting streak reaches eight games before injury
ST. PETERSBURG -- Mariners catcher Miguel Olivo was placed on the disabled list Tuesday with a strained groin muscle sustained in the ninth inning of Monday's 3-2 loss to Tampa Bay.
Olivo hurt himself fielding a ball hit in front of the mound by B.J. Upton as he planted his right foot and threw across his body.
The veteran catcher was on an eight-game hitting streak after going 2-for-4 with a home run before he fell to the turf and had to be helped off the field. He said the injury felt worse than a similar groin injury that sidelined him about three weeks during 2011 Spring Training.
"I tried to be aggressive, the way I am, and make that play at first base," Olivo said. "My leg stuck in the grass and I felt a pop in my groin. I know that feeling. I know my body. I have to be honest with myself. I know it's not going to be easy. It's hurting and real painful."
The team recalled left fielder Mike Carp from his injury rehab stint with Triple-A Tacoma. Manager Eric Wedge said he will go with rookie Jesus Montero and backup John Jaso behind the plate in Olivo's absence. Jaso has hit well in limited time at designated hitter but has yet to catch after being acquired from Tampa Bay in the offseason.
Montero, 22, has hit .259 and belted his fourth home run Monday, while seeing most of his time at DH since being acquired from the Yankees in the Michael Pineda trade.
Wedge said a full diagnosis won't be available on Olivo until the injury calms down, but that he's definitely headed to the disabled list.
"You guys have asked how Jaso would get behind the plate and I guess you know now," Wedge said. "If we do that, they'll split time, just where they're both at and what we're trying to do here with the development process."
Montero said he's ready for whatever comes of a tough situation.
"I feel sorry," the rookie said. "I've been through that. It's bad, but I just want him to be here again and keep helping the team, like he was doing. I hope the best for him, so he can be back.
"I don't know what they're going to do or decide," said Montero. "I'm here to help the team and do my best. Whatever they're going to do with me, I'm going to be fine."
After a tough start to his season, Olivo had just begun heating up with the bat. He's hit .324 over the past eight games with three home runs to lift his season average to .210.
"Yeah, I've been struggling the whole month and now I start feeling better and that thing happens," Olivo said. "It's part of baseball. Some things you can't control."
"I feel bad for the kid," Wedge said. "You've seen what he's starting to do. That's the reason you start playing him, because you know he's going to get it going and what he means behind the plate for us. I feel badly for him, but like I told him after the game, this is just another bump in the road."