Is Nelson Cruz playing tonight? Latest injury update for San Diego Padres vs. Cleveland Guardians

San Diego Padres designated hitter Nelson Cruz
San Diego Padres designated hitter Nelson Cruz / Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

With the San Diego Padres coming off an off day and scheduled to begin a three-game series at home against the Cleveland Guardians, it's likely that Nelson Cruz will be back in the lineup when the two teams square off on Tuesday night at Petco Park.

San Diego Padres: The latest Nelson Cruz injury news

While playing a series against the Colorado Rockies in Denver over the weekend, San Diego Padres manager Bob Melvin indicated that the 42-year-old Cruz could rejoin the Padres on Tuesday.

"He (Cruz) wants to play every day leading up to when we could potentially activate him, and that would be Tuesday," Melvin told Friars on Base and other reporters inside the Padres dugout on Friday.

Cruz was placed on the injured list on June 2 (retroactive to June 1) with a right hamstring strain but seemed to shake off any effects while playing for Triple-A El Paso. In 16 at-bats over four games with the Chihuahuas, Cruz slashed .313/.353/.563 and logged a home run and three RBI.

In 111 plate appearances for the Padres this season, Cruz has slashed 238/.270/.381 with three home runs and 16 RBI. In his first season in San Diego, the 19-year MLB veteran has slotted into the team's designated hitter role in 29 games while also seeing an inning at first base.

However, Cruz hit a dry spell as the team's designated hitter before his injury, slashing just .128/.191/.128 in 17 games in May (42 plate appearances). During that stretch, he went 5-for-39 and struck out 16 times without an RBI or extra-base hit.

While the official lineup has not been released at the time of this writing, it's expected that Cruz will be activated before the game and could well get another crack at the designated hitter duties against Cleveland right-hander Tanner Bibee.

We will provide updates below as game time draws near.

UPDATE: Cruz is not in the starting lineup on Tuesday.

UPDATE: Cruz will be activated before the game.