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Andrus sits with stiff lower back

ARLINGTON -- Elvis Andrus said his lower back was stiff Sunday, but he hopes to play sometime in the upcoming A's series.

He left Saturday's game in the first inning with back spasms while running from first to third. Andrus slowed down halfway to third base and left the game after the play. He said he tweaked his back on Friday, but it got worse after he ran the bases. Andrus has dealt with back issues throughout the season, but mostly in his upper back.

"I'm going to rush it as much as I can, but I want to be healthy out there," Andrus said. "I haven't been 100 percent since the second game of the season. At least 80 percent would work."

Andrus said he feels the injury when he reaches down, but not when he's hitting. He got Sunday off, but Rangers manager Ron Washington said he planned to give Andrus a day off even before the injury.

"We're not worried about the importance of the series [against the A's], we're worried about the importance of the players that we have to play in that series," Washington said. "If Elvis is not ready to play, Elvis is not ready to play. We're not going to dig a hole and hide. We have missed a lot of players, and we continue to move forward. It's not going to change."

Andrus hit .303 with 11 steals, 18 runs and 20 RBIs in August to become the first player in franchise history to reach those numbers in a month in those three categories. Mike Trout was the only player to produce such stats since the start of last season.

Master Tesfatsion is an associate reporter for
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