PHOENIX — Diamondbacks catcher Miguel Montero was placed on the disabled list with a lower back strain Thursday, a week after an MRI showed inflammation but no structural damage to the area.
Montero, who is hitting .228, was replaced on the roster by former Arizona State catcher Tuffy Gosewisch, whose contract was purchased from Triple-A Reno.
“I’m hanging in there,” Montero told FOX Sports Arizona on Wednesday.
“My back is still a little stiff. The last thing I want to do is hurt it again and be out for a longer time. I’m going to try to take my time rather than hurting it and going out for the rest of the year. Backs are a really scary situation, and as a catcher it is even worse, because I have to lay down, blocking balls and all that.”
Montero, who started 21 consecutive games in a 25-day period in June, has caught 796 1/3 innings this season, second in the majors to the Cardinals’ Yadier Molina, who was placed on the disabled list with a knee injury Wednesday.
Montero will be the 10th key contributor to spend time on the D-backs’ disabled list — Aaron Hill, Cody Ross, Adam Eaton, Jason Kubel, Eric Chavez, Willie Bloomquist, J.J. Putz, Brandon McCarthy and Trevor Cahill are the others.
Montero has nine homers and 34 RBIs in his first season after signing a five-year, $60 million extension last season.
Gosewisch, 29, is making his first trip to them major leagues after leaving ASU in 2005 and previously playing in the Philadelphia and Toronto organizations. He was hitting .285 with six homers and 30 RBIs in Reno.
In another move, the D-backs returned reliever Chaz Roe to Reno while activating right-hander Zeke Spruill for a start against the Rangers on Thursday.
Spruill has not given up an earned run in his last 31 2/3 consecutive innings at Reno.