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Toronto Blue Jays leave Edwin Encarnacion out of starting lineup with back issue

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DETROIT - Toronto slugger Edwin Encarnacion is out of the starting lineup for Thursday's game at Detroit with what the team describes as a minor back problem.

Manager John Gibbons says he wants to let Encarnacion rest Thursday, but he hopes the first baseman will be able to play Friday night against the St. Louis Cardinals.

Encarnacion is batting .273 with 19 home runs and 50 RBIs on the season for the AL East-leading Blue Jays.

Gibbons also provided an update on outfielder Colby Rasmus, who is on the disabled list with a right hamstring injury. Gibbons says Rasmus took batting practice and ran the bases Wednesday in Florida.

Detroit, meanwhile, left shortstop Eugenio Suarez out of the starting lineup. Suarez hurt his left knee in his major league debut Wednesday night.

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