DETROIT (AP) -Tigers All-Star second baseman Placido Polanco was out of the lineup Sunday against Boston, a day after leaving a game because of a back injury.
Polanco said he was encouraged by his health when he woke up.
``It feels a lot better,'' he said. ``Without a doubt, I thought I was going to be worse.''
The first-time All-Star said he hoped to be healthy enough to play Tuesday night in San Francisco.
Polanco is among AL leaders with a .335 batting average and 62 runs and is the hardest player in the league to strike out, wihiffing every 22.4 plate appearances.
He has gone 119 games without an error, dating to July 1, 2006, and is 24 short of matching Luis Castillo's record for consecutive errorless games a second baseman.
Polanco left during the eighth inning of Saturday's 3-2 win over the Red Sox. He said he hurt himself swinging in his second at-bat, but tried to play through the pain.
Omar Infante played in place of Polanco in the series finale Sunday against Boston. The Tigers might catch a break if Polanco is not seriously injured because their next game is Thursday night in Seattle.
The Tigers slumped late last season when Polanco was out with a separated shoulder. After having baseball's best record for much of 2006, they lost 22 of 35 without him. He returned shortly before the end of the season and went on to be named the AL championship series MVP after hitting .529 during the Tigers' four-game sweep of Oakland.
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