Lyle Spencer

Pujols out of lineup with sore back

Pujols out of lineup with sore back

ANAHEIM -- Albert Pujols was out of the Angels' lineup on Saturday night against the Rangers with pain in his lower back. He felt it as he approached home plate on Friday night, scoring a run on Erick Aybar's single during a 7-3 victory.

"I kind of tweaked my back -- I don't know how," Pujols said. "I was three-fourths of the way [down the line] to the plate, two steps from home plate, when it kind of locked on me. I grabbed it. I feel a little sore today.

"I think I can get in the game today, but I don't want to take two or three steps back to take one step forward."

Slick-fielding Efren Navarro, summoned from Triple-A Salt Lake, was at first base and batting ninth in the lineup against Rangers right-hander Nick Martinez.

Angels manager Mike Scioscia said it was day to day with Pujols, who has 16 homers and 44 RBIs with a .255/.315/.479 slash line. Pujols came out of the game after five innings Friday night.

"It's a little stiff today," Scioscia said of Pujols' back. "We'll give him another day and evaluate him tomorrow."

Lyle Spencer is a columnist for This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.