Pujols (calf), Ankiel (knee) held out of Cardinals lineup

Updated: June 4, 2008, 10:11 PM ET
Associated Press

WASHINGTON -- St. Louis Cardinals slugger Albert Pujols and outfielder Rick Ankiel were out of the starting lineup Wednesday night against Washington because of injuries.


Rick Ankiel


As it turned out, it didn't matter as the contest was postponed due to rain. The game will be made up as part of a day-night doubleheader on Thursday. It was not immediately clear if the duo would sit out those games.

Pujols left Tuesday night's game with tightness in his left calf. Ankiel had an infected right knee.

Pujols, who's batting .362 with 14 home runs and 39 RBIs, consulted with manager Tony La Russa and trainer Barry Weinberg before deciding early Wednesday afternoon not to play.

"If I wanted to, I could tape it up and play. I want to be smart," Pujols said.

The calf first bothered him early in Tuesday's game and La Russa wanted to take him out, but Pujols played until he was hit in the upper back by a pitch from Jesus Colome.

With Tuesday's game twice interrupted by rain and more inclement weather on Wednesday and perhaps forecast for Thursday, Pujols agreed it was best to sit.

"That's probably why it got sore," Pujols said. "I don't want to take a chance."

Pujols had a calf injury a year ago. He said this one wasn't as bad.

"I'm looking forward to playing tomorrow," Pujols said on Wednesday.

La Russa, however, said he expected his star to miss two games.

"You've got to be careful with it," La Russa said.

Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press