Dodgers change role for Miguel Rojas after returning from injured list

Miguel Rojas pitched five innings at shortstop with Single-A Rancho Cucamonga Saturday night in the beginning of a two-game rehab stint before returning to the Los Angeles Dodgers lineup.

Rojas records more at-bats with the Earthquakes as a designated hitter on Sunday, and will then be activated off the 10-day injured list in the next day or two.

“The hope is he’ll be back with us on Monday,” Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said.

When the Dodgers traded for Rojas, it was with the intent of having him fill a useful role off the bench. Those plans changed when Gavin Lux suffered a torn ACL and LCL in his right knee during spring training, relegating Rojas to the starting role.

It was a position the veteran said he trained for during the offseason, and Rojas withdrew from playing for Venezuela’s team in the World Baseball Classic in order to continue preparing and developing a relationship with Miguel Vargas.

But it seems the Dodgers no longer view Rojas as an everyday stop.

“I think a few times a week is fair,” Roberts replied when asked how often Rojas would be expected to start on activation.

“I don’t feel comfortable getting rid of him every day anyway. And whether it’s CT or Mookie taking that down, I feel good. I think once he comes back and you look at the matches, and what gives the best chance of winning that day, I can give you a better answer.” I don’t know this answer now.

“There’s a lot of soft tissue (injuries), and we have to find a way to keep him healthy.”

During Rojas’ absence, the Dodgers relied on Luke Williams, Chris Taylor and Mookie Betts on short notice. Williams has since been optioned to Triple-A Oklahoma City, leaving Betts and Taylor to fill that position. Bates is willing to do so on a regular basis, but it’s unclear if the Dodgers want to make such a commitment.

Miguel Rojas injury

Dating back to spring training, Rojas has dealt with a right calf and foot cramp, left groin tightness, left hamstring cramp and a left hamstring strain.

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