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Yankees 1B Anthony Rizzo Scratched With Back Stiffness

Rizzo will not play in New York’s series opener against the Pirates.

Anthony Rizzo will miss a chance to pad his impressive career numbers against the Pirates.

The first baseman was scratched from the Yankees’ lineup just before Tuesday’s first pitch in Pittsburgh. Rizzo is out with lower back stiffness, prompting DJ LeMahieu to play first base and Gleyber Torres to play second while Matt Carpenter slots in as the designated hitter.

LeMahieu was originally going to play second base in the series opener against the Pirates, while Torres was penciled in as the DH.

Rizzo, who spent 9.5 seasons playing in the National League Central as a member of the Cubs, has always enjoyed hitting at PNC Park and against the Pirates. He has 30 career home runs against Pittsburgh, his second most against any team. Only the Reds (34 HR) have surrendered more longballs to the 32-year-old.

Rizzo’s 30 home runs off the Pirates are the most by any big leaguer against the club since 2012.

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Seventeen of those home runs have come at PNC Park. Rizzo has also totaled a .298/.393/.559 slash line, 53 runs scored and 48 RBI over 79 games there.

Rizzo is enjoying a power-heavy season with the Yankees after re-signing with the club last offseason. The 2021 trade deadline acquisition is hitting .223/.336/.507 with 22 home runs and 52 RBI over 77 games.

The lefty swinger’s back issue comes with him surging a bit. Rizzo has three home runs in his last five games and seven in his last 16 games.

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