Detroit Tigers put struggling slugger Victor Martinez on DL with knee inflammation

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DETROIT — Victor Martinez was put on the 15-day disabled list by the Detroit Tigers on Tuesday after struggling in his return from offseason knee surgery.

Detroit said Martinez has left knee inflammation. He had surgery on that knee in February after tearing the medial meniscus.

"We had a plan back in April. It hasn't worked out," Detroit manager Brad Ausmus said. "He had a cortisone shot last Thursday and we gave him three days off. He played yesterday. At this point we felt other steps were necessary. It wasn't working. ... There's a weakness created by the surgery. It's created an issue in another part of the knee."

The 36-year-old Martinez is hitting .216 with only one home run. The switch-hitter is 12 for 26 (.462) against left-handers and 12 for 85 (.141) against righties.

"We're just not seeing the real Victor. We're seeing a shell of what Victor is," Ausmus said. "We told him not to pick up a bat for about a week."

Detroit has four outfielders who have been in the starting lineup for at least 14 games: Yoenis Cespedes, Anthony Gose, J.D. Martinez and Rajai Davis. Now they all might play regularly, since Martinez's designated hitter spot is open.

Outfielder Tyler Collins was recalled from Triple-A Toledo to fill Martinez's roster place.

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