Results tagged ‘ back ’

Pence’s back keeps him out of lineup

Astros right fielder Hunter Pence, who’s riding a 22-game hitting streak, was out of the lineup for Sunday’s game against the Braves and wasn’t expected to play. Pence has been dealing with lower back spasms.

Jason Bourgeois was originally going to get the start in right field, but he was scratched about an hour before the game with an ankle sprain. Jason Michaels started in his place.

Astros manager Brad Mills said Pence and head athletic trainer Nate Lucero came into his office following Saturday’s game and expressed concern over Pence’s back condition.

“Hunter doesn’t want to ask for a day off,” Mills said. “God bless him. That’s the way you want everybody to be. But throughout the conversation, he said it hurt him when he ran and felt like it was going to lock up on him.

“If it locks up on him when he tries to do something, it could really hurt something. With a day game following a night game, the chances of that happening go up. At the end of everything, we felt today would be a good day to take off.”

The Astros are in a stretch of 16 consecutive games without a day off, and Pence has started every game in right field.

“It only makes sense for him to take today off,” Mills said.

Pence, who’s hitting .391 during the streak, told reporters Sunday morning his back feels fine.

“They told me last night they wanted, with a day game after a night game, they wanted to give me a day rest and come back ready to go,” he said. “I felt good after the game, and that’s that.”

Mills said his goal is to try to not use Pence as a pinch-hitter, and not just because he has a 22-game hitting streak on the line.

“He needs today off,” Mills said. “If some unforeseen thing happens with someone getting hurt and he has to play and we got 15 innings and we have no one else, that’s something we have to weigh at that time.”

Pence out of Astros lineup

Astros right fielder Hunter Pence, who has a 22-game hitting streak, isn’t in the lineup Sunday. Pence has been dealing with lower back spasms. Jason Bourgeois is getting the start in right field.

Here is the lineup:

CF Michael Bourn

RF Jason Bourgeois

2B Matt Downs

LF Carlos Lee

1B Brett Wallace

3B Chris Johnson

SS Clint Barmes

C Carlos Corporan

RHP Brett Myers

Lindstrom knows DL right move

Matt Lindstrom, who has been battling back problems for several weeks, was placed on the 15-day disabled list following Wednesday’s loss to the Mets. The Astros recalled left-hander Fernando Abad from Triple-A Round Rock.

Lindstrom was removed from his role as closer Tuesday following a tough stretch of games in which he was 0-3 with two blown saves and had allowed nine earned runs in 2 1/3 innings in four appearances. His back had been affecting his mechanics, and the Astros finally decided to put him on the disabled list.

“His back just hasn’t been getting any better,” manager Brad Mills said. “We talked to him before the game and it wasn’t letting him finish any of his pitches and letting him be the pitcher he is. We need to get him right.”

Lindstrom, who has saved 22 games in 28 opportunities, was clearly frustrated, but didn’t disagree with the decision.

“It’s not getting any better and I don’t want to cost my team anymore games,” he said. “So the good news is my arm feels great and that’s why it’s so frustrating for me now because I can’t get on the same page as my back. We’re just going to try to treat it for 15 days and get it some rest and hopefully come out firing when this DL stint is done and I can be me again and help the team win.”

Lindstrom said rest will be the key.

“I’m going to continue to work hard as far as getting this taken care of so I can help us win games in September,” he said. “When I’m right and feel the way I usually do, there’s no hesitation on the mound, no question marks. I can throw pitches with conviction and locate better without thinking the back is going to spasm or fall on my face with the next pitch. I had this all the way back in May in Colorado and I’ve been fighting it for two months, and hopefully this stint will help it get better.”

Abad, 24, was with Houston earlier this year and appeared in one game, throwing one inning in his Major League debut. He was 4-3 with a 2.50 ERA in 14 games at Round Rock.

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