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Tigers’ J.D. Martinez headed to DL with elbow fracture, will undergo further testing

Detroit Tigers v Houston Astros Photo by Scott Halleran/Getty Images

Detroit Tigers’ J.D. Martinez exited the game after he suffered a non-displaced fracture of his right elbow fielding a ball against the Kansas City Royals on Thursday. X-rays diagnosed the original fracture, and Martinez will undergo a CT scan on Friday for further confirmation.

After the game the Tigers placed Martinez on the 15-day disabled list and will recall outfielder Steven Moya from Toledo prior to Friday’s game.

In the second inning, Martinez was attempting to field a ball hit by Paulo Orlando when he put both arms to stop himself at the right field wall. He immediately favored his right arm, and made an awkward throw toward the infield upon reaching the ball. Tigers head athletic trainer Kevin Rand made a quick examination of Martinez before the two left the field, Martinez under his own power.

While further medical testing is needed to diagnose the severity of the injury, Martinez will likely miss at least four weeks while the fracture heals. A nondisplaced fracture of this nature is the least severe type of bone fracture, and healing time is relatively quick compared to most injuries. Once the fracture has healed, Martinez’s rehab progress will be determined by how comfortable he is throwing and swinging a bat.


Center fielder Cameron Maybin missed five weeks of action during spring training before beginning a rehab assignment earlier this season. One would expect Martinez to see a similar period of inactivity (hopefully sans the prolonged rehab assignment). The Tigers will likely call up Steven Moya to take Martinez’s place, but roster moves likely won’t be announced until Friday.

With Martinez gone, Aviles shifted to right field, Justin Upton moved to left from center, and Andrew Romine took over in center. The Tigers, trailing 3-1 at the time, later tied it on two homers in the top of the fourth: one by Victor Martinez, and another by Nick Castellanos. It was V-Mart’s second homer of the game.