Third baseman Jeff Keppinger was a late scratch from the Chicago White Sox lineup last night, as the veteran was dealing with stiffness in his lower back. Manager Robin Ventura told reporters -- including Robert Falkoff of MLB.com -- that the move was more precautionary than anything, and he doesn't believe the injury is serious.
"I think it's one of those that's more
precautionary," White Sox manager Robin Ventura said. "We're in a
position where we can have Conor go in and not push Kep to have to go out there
and play. [Keppinger] is still available if something happens."
Keppinger experienced the discomfort during pre-game workouts, and Ventura opted to replace him in the lineup and at the hot corner with Conor Gillaspie. The skipper thought he'd have Keppinger available in case of emergency, but wanted to play it safe with the infielder so as not to worsen his condition.
Chicago hopes to get Keppinger back in the lineup soon, as he had gone 12-for-31 with three extra-base hits and seven runs scored over his last 10 games. The stretch represents significant improvement, as the 33-year-old is still only hitting a combined .247/.274/.298 over 388 plate appearances this season.
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