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Crawford sits out again with sore back

LOS ANGELES -- Dodgers outfielder Carl Crawford is still dealing with a sore lower back, and was out of the lineup for a fourth straight game on Saturday.

Crawford said the discomfort is in the lower left side of his back. He was unavailable on Friday, but was available off the bench on Saturday.

"Yesterday was painful for me," Crawford said before Saturday's game against the Rockies. "The last two days were really painful. But I took some medication and it knocked out a lot of the pain. I feel a lot better today. My back is still sore right now, but it changes once you get loose."

Crawford had an MRI exam on Saturday, but manager Don Mattingly said "it doesn't sound like anything significant."

Crawford is 2-for-25 since returning from the disabled list July 5 after missing 30 games with a left hamstring strain. He was hitting .301 before going on the DL, but his average has dropped to .274. Crawford tried to break out of his slump by spending extra time in the batting cage.

"For some reason I was scuffling, wasn't seeing the ball as well," Crawford said. "I wasn't hitting the ball the same. That's why I try to ramp up and do as much as I do to get back to how I was hitting the ball.

Mattingly believes the extra swings contributed to Crawford's back issues.

"Carl works really hard, and sometimes that's a detriment," Mattingly said. "He kind of ran himself right into the ground."

Crawford said he's still learning how to change his routine after a few injury-plagued seasons.

"It's just always been the way I've done things," Crawford said. "I've got to learn to scale back, but still do the things I need to do to get ready."

On the positive side, Crawford said his surgically repaired left elbow has not given him any issues.

"I'm not thinking about it, and that's important for me," Crawford said. "It feels normal again."

Austin Laymance is an associate reporter for
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