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Royals' Grudzielanek slowed by irritated disk in lower back

Royals second baseman Mark Grudzielanek is scheduled for further tests after a magnetic resonance imaging exam revealed an irritated disk as the cause of his sore lower back.

“He’s got some discomfort,” manager Trey Hillman said before Thursday’s double-header against the Cleveland Indians at Kauffman Stadium.

“A little rest, hopefully, will calm it down sooner rather than later. We’re fighting against something that’s probably not going to get better without a little rest.”

Hillman said Grudzielanek, at this point, isn’t expected to be placed on the 15-day disabled list.

Grudzielanek, 37, has battled a sore back at various times in recent years. He was picked last season as the club’s player of the year and was batting .286 this season in 16 games.

Alberto Callaspo played second base in the first game of the double-header and is generally viewed as Grudzielanek’s long-term replacement. Callaspo carried a .348 average into the game with eight hits in 23 at-bats.

Grudzielanek first reported the soreness Tuesday but played that night in a 15-1 loss to the Indians.

To reach Bob Dutton, Royals reporter for The Star, call (816) 234-4352 or send email to bdutton@kcstar.com.

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