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Neil Walker Injury: Pirates Second Baseman Hopeful Back Problem Won't Be 'Long-Term'

Pittsburgh Pirates second baseman Neil Walker will not play in Wednesday's series finale against the St. Louis Cardinals, and says that he's taking it day-by-day is dealing with the lower back pain that cropped up before Monday's game.

Speaking with Karen Price of Trib Live, Walker says that, while he's dealt with back problems before, he's hopeful it's just a short-term issue:

"I think the biggest thing with the lower back is the torque and when you switch hit, too, there's no easy way to protect it because you're going both ways," he said. "So I have to make sure that the inflammation is fully gone and not hindering me in any way, because I do have to torque both ways and reach down for ground balls and whatnot. But talking to doctors, they feel very encouraged that this won't be a long-term thing."

Walker is hitting .280/.342/.435 with 14 home runs and 69 RBIs for the Pirates this season, in 121 games.

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Photographs by dizfunk used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.