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Astros OF Springer leaves game with lower back stiffness

Houston Astros' George Springer slides safely into home plate for an inside-the-park home run during the fifth inning of the team's baseball game against the Detroit Tigers in Detroit, Tuesday, May 14, 2019. (AP Photo/Paul Sancya)

BOSTON (AP) — Astros outfielder George Springer has left Houston’s game against the Boston Red Sox in the fifth inning with lower back stiffness.

Springer, who entered Sunday leading the American League with 17 homers, took three big swings in the first and struck out against Chris Sale. On the second and third swings, Springer appeared to reach briefly for the lower right side of his back.

Springer also struck out swinging in his next two at-bats — in the second and fourth — before he was removed when Houston took the field on defense in the fifth. He was replaced in the batting order by Tony Kemp.

On a tear at the plate lately, Springer began the day batting .318 with 42 RBIs.

Boston won 4-3 to end Houston’s 10-game winning streak.

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