CLEVELAND -- Third baseman Alex Gordon was out of the Royals' lineup on Tuesday night because of a stiff back.
"Yesterday it was bothering him a little bit and it didn't get any better overnight," manager Trey Hillman said. "We'll just give him a day to treat it and we're hopeful he's ready to go tomorrow."
Esteban German replaced Gordon at third base, with little-used Jason Smith moving to second base. German had started the last five games at second in place of Mark Grudzielanek, who has been on the disabled list since Aug. 2 with a sprained right ankle.
Hillman said left-handed reliever Ron Mahay (sore foot) was available to pitch if needed.
"It's no better, no worse," Mahay said. "It's day-to-day. We treat it every day, I do my stretching and take it from there."
Mahay has pitched just once in the last nine games.
Left-hander Jimmy Gobble (sore back) is continuing to have trouble with his command and control in his rehabilitation stay with Triple-A Omaha, Hillman said.
Lefty John Bale (sore shoulder) is still rehabbing at the Surprise, Ariz., camp and is scheduled to pitch in a batting session in the next couple of days.
Outfielder Joey Gathright (sore shoulder) is healthy in his rehab stint with Omaha.
Dick Kaegel is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.