Adam LaRoche out Saturday with back stiffness

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According to Mark Zuckerman of CSNWashington.com, Adam LaRoche is out of today’s lineup against the Reds due to a stiff back. He has been dealing with the issue over the past couple of days and made an early exit from last night’s 15-0 blowout loss after his condition worsened.

It doesn’t sound like a major concern at the moment, but there’s a chance that LaRoche could also sit out tomorrow. Chad Tracy will make the start at first base this afternoon with right-hander Mike Leake on the hill for Cincinnati.

LaRoche, 33, batted .271/.343/.510 with 33 home runs, 100 RBI and an .853 OPS last season. He was retained by Washington this winter on a two-year, $24 million contract with a mutual option for 2015.

Michael Wacha leaves game with a left oblique strain

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Cardinals starter Michael Wacha suffered a strained left oblique muscle during his start this afternoon against the Phillies, causing him to leave in the fourth inning.

Wacha is 8-2 with a 3.20 ERA and a 71/36 K/BB ratio in 84.1 innings across 15 starts this season with St. Louis. To the extent he has to miss some time — and obliques invariably send starters to the disabled list — potential fill-in candidates include John Gant, Daniel Poncedeleon and Dakota Hudson.