The Phillies announced before Sunday's finale of a three-game series against the Mets that Rollins was placed on the 15-day DL. Outfielder Chris Snelling (left knee inflammation) was also put on the DL, retroactive to April 17. To fill their spots on the 25-man roster, infielder Brad Harman was recalled from Double-A Reading and outfielder T.J. Bohn was recalled from Triple-A Lehigh Valley.
Rollins, the reigning National League Most Valuable Player, suffered a high left ankle sprain on April 8 at Shea Stadium running the bases in the top of the eighth inning. He has not started 10 straight games since the injury occurred, though he has appeared as a pinch-hitter four times, including grounding out in the sixth inning of Saturday's 4-2 loss to the Mets.
Rollins is hitting .308 (12-for-39) with two doubles, two home runs, six RBIs and two stolen bases.
"I definitely have progressed," Rollins said. "It was getting a lot better. I've been able to move left to right and do some things, but I've been under a controlled environment, taking ground balls and batting practice and some things. When I got my chance to pinch-hit in the game, it just kind of re-aggravated the injury over and over. It was to a point where it has gotten a lot better, but it isn't getting better for me to play."
Rollins met with head athletic trainer Scott Sheridan after Saturday's game and came to the realization some extra rest was needed.
"I went in there and talk to Scott [on Saturday] night, and I was thinking about the team," said Rollins, who added that teammate J.C. Romero gave him some advice to rest his ankle. "It puts [manager] Charlie [Manuel] in a tough position every night whether to use me and then have to use somebody else. He can get another able body up here."
Manuel was hopeful that the speedy shortstop would have been able to return sooner. When asked if the Phillies should have put Rollins on the DL sooner, he was a bit terse.
"Mistake? I don't know. I'm not a doctor," Manuel said. "I don't regret anything that I do."
He will miss Rollins at the top of the lineup, though.
"He's our leadoff hitter," Manuel said. "He brings a lot to our team. He means a lot to our team. We need him to play. It would be great to have him in there every day like last year."
Phillies assistant general manager Ruben Amaro also was staying optimistic about an earlier return for Rollins. The fact that it didn't transpire is another story.
"In retrospect, of course it was a mistake," Amaro said. "It's time and circumstance. You can only go on how the guy feels and what the symptoms show."
The symptoms showed Rollins that he needed a break.
"I got a pinch-hit [appearance] again [Saturday], and I'm a one-legged hitter after that," Rollins said. "I can't continue to go at that rate. Not the way my game is based on speed. To hit, you've got to use your legs."
Snelling had his contract purchased from Triple-A last Sunday after Shane Victorino was placed on the DL. Snelling went 1-for-3 with a pinch-hit homer in last Tuesday's 4-3 win over the Astros.
Harman, 22, was hitting .222 (12-for-54) with three doubles, one homer and three RBIs in 16 games for Reading. He was 6-for-19 in his last 19 games.
Bohn was hitting .190 (8-for-42) with one double in 13 games in Triple-A, where he played all three outfield positions. The 28-year-old was hitting .417 (5-for-12) in the three games prior to his recall. Bohn previously played for the Mariners in 2006 and was claimed off waivers by the Phillies last September.
Andy Jasner is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.