Crawford goes on DL with lower back pain

Crawford goes on DL with lower back pain

SAN FRANCISCO -- The Dodgers placed outfielder Carl Crawford on the 15-day disabled list Saturday with lower back pain and recalled infielder Micah Johnson from Triple-A Oklahoma City.

Crawford said Friday that he has dealt with back issues since the middle of Spring Training, but it worsened in recent days.

"He's trying to play through it. For us, quit trying to play both sides, him trying to be available but not certain he's available," said manager Dave Roberts. "This gives him a chance to nip it. The DL seems the prudent decision. It takes pressure off him and provides us flexibility."

Johnson, primarily a second baseman, can also play the outfield, provides a left-handed hitter like Crawford and can pinch-run, Roberts said. His stay is likely to be short, however, as infielder Howie Kendrick is expected to be activated Tuesday.

Crawford is the 11th Dodger on the disabled list. He was used as a decoy pinch-hitter Friday night and did not bat. He did pinch-hit Thursday and grounded out. Johnson was expected to arrive in time for Saturday's game.

Crawford has been plagued by injuries, missing at least one month on the disabled list in each of the past five seasons.

Ken Gurnick is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.