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Cuddyer remains out, DL stint possible

DENVER -- Rockies right fielder Michael Cuddyer missed his third consecutive start Sunday as he continues to recover from a left hamstring cramp he suffered in Thursday's win in San Diego. Three days later, Cuddyer said the injury could be classified as a strain.

"It's slow, but I'm still out there and I'm still trying to push through it," Cuddyer said of his recovery. "It feels okay. Not great, but not terrible either."

Manager Walt Weiss said Cuddyer feels "a little bit better" and was able to get some running in Sunday.

"It's pretty much the same," Cuddyer said, indicating that he wasn't seeing significant improvement yet. "I'm still available. Maybe I'd be able to go out and give an at-bat if need be."

With the possibility of the reigning National League batting champ going on the disabled list and backdating his time missed to the last game he played, his role as a pinch-hitter Sunday would likely only come up if Cuddyer has the potential to change the game with a swing of his bat, regardless of what he can do with his legs after making contact.

"I guess I'd still be trying to get on base, because then you could pinch-run for me," Cuddyer said. "But it's more doing a little bit of damage with a runner in scoring position."

The Rockies have won three straight entering play Sunday, and haven't faced a situation that finds them short-handed on the bench during Cuddyer's absence, but with a key divisional series with the Giants starting Monday, the pressure is growing to be at full strength. Cuddyer understands the decision day is looming for the Rockies to determine whether or not he needs to be placed on the DL to make room for another player.

"In the National League especially you can't afford to keep a lame duck out on the bench for very long," Cuddyer said. "I'm sure the next day or so is going to be a deciding factor."

Owen Perkins is a contributor to
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