"I hurt it the day before we went to Australia," Chavez said. "I actually did it when we were playing Cleveland [in Spring Training]."
Chavez said he hurt his knee running, and it has been hampering him in the field and at the plate.
"I'm having trouble driving off my back side and keeping all my weight on my back side," Chavez said. "It's been bothering me for a while, so we'll get through [Sunday's] game and talk about a course of action."
Chavez has played in 43 of the D-backs' games this season and made 80 plate appearances. He's hitting .246 with three home runs.
Chavez has dealt with knee problems for a while. He missed 15 games with a left knee strain last August.
"I don't know what the term for it is," Chavez said. "There's something degenerative going on there because I'm old.
"It's been manageable. We've gotten this far, but I think we want to get to the peak performance."
Manager Kirk Gibson said Nick Evans and Didi Gregorius could be possible backups to third baseman Martin Prado if Chavez goes to the DL.
"It's just kind of degenerative. It hasn't really been good all year," Gibson said. "He's been fighting it ever since Spring Training. He's got a lot of treatment on it, and it just hasn't really strengthened up to the point where we can get on top of it. We play him a little bit and it seems to get weaker."
Adam Lichtenstein is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.