ATLANTA — The Nationals placed OF Bryce Harper on the 15-day disabled list Saturday with bursitis in his left knee.
The team tried to give Harper time to heal without using the disabled list. Manager Davey Johnson said the move became necessary when the team needed bullpen help before Saturday's game against the Braves.
Johnson also said the team decided it was necessary to protect Harper's status for the season.
"You always do what's best for the player," Johnson said. "If the club felt that he would be able to come back in three or four or five days, we wouldn't have DL'd him."
In other Nationals news, Johnson said an MRI exam showed a slight strain in RHP Stephen Strasburg's right side. The team hopes he can avoid the disabled list.
CRAWFORD HURT: Dodgers LF Carl Crawford left the game against the Rockies in the third inning with a left hamstring injury. The team later described the injury as a cramp.
BLUE JAYS: RHP Brandon Morrow went on the 15-day disabled list with right forearm tightness, and 40-year-old RHP Ramon Ortiz was called up from Triple-A Buffalo to replace him.
CUBS: RH reliever Rafael Dolis went on the disabled list with a strained right forearm. RH reliever Blake Parker was called up from Triple-A Iowa.
D'BACKS: RHP Brandon McCarthy went on the 15-day disabled list with right shoulder inflammation. RHP Randall Delgado was recalled from Triple-A Reno.
GIANTS: 3B Pablo Sandoval was diagnosed with a left foot strain and could miss up to a week of action.
MARINERS: C Jesus Montero, optioned to Triple-A Tacoma on May 22, has a torn meniscus in his left knee and will be out 4-6 weeks following surgery.
ORIOLES: RH reliever Jon Rauch agreed to a minor-league contract and is scheduled to report to Triple-A Norfolk on Monday.
PADRES: Closer Huston Street went on the 15-day disabled list with a strained left calf muscle. RHPs Luke Gregerson and Dale Thayer will close in his absence.
RED SOX: CF Jacoby Ellsbury was out of the starting lineup for a second straight game because of tightness in his left groin.