Mike Trout back in Angels’ lineup Thursday

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Good news for the Angels. After dealing with upper back stiffness over the past week, Mike Trout has returned to the starting lineup for tonight’s game against the Astros.

Trout didn’t play Saturday or Sunday and made it through just one at-bat on Monday before exiting due to renewed stiffness in his back. While he was held out of the lineup again last night, an MRI showed only inflammation and no structural damage. He’ll be eased back into things tonight as the designated hitter.

Trout, 22, is batting .293/.379/.546 with 11 home runs, 38 RBI, and five stolen bases over 55 games this season.

Giants sign Austin Jackson to two-year, $6 million contract

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The Giants announced on Monday night the signing of outfielder Austin Jackson. According to Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports, it’s a two-year, $6 million deal with performance incentives that allow Jackson to earn up to an additional $2.5 million for a total of $8.5 million.

Jackson, who soon turns 31 years old, spent last season with the Indians. In 318 plate appearances, he hit .318/.387/.482 with seven home runs, 35 RBI, and 46 runs scored.

The Giants have been on the hunt for a center fielder and Jackson addresses that need relatively cheaply. Jackson will join Hunter Pence and newcomer Andrew McCutchen in the outfield.