Orioles shortstop J.J. Hardy left Monday's game against the Minnesota Twins at Camden Yards after the bottom of the seventh inning with a lower back spasm, according to the club.
Hardy also missed five games in April with lower back spasms. Even though he also missed time with a right hamstring sprain (two games) and a left thumb sprain (three games), he hasn't missed any time because of his back since the season's first month.
Ryan Flaherty replaced Hardy at shortstop Monday.
Hardy left the game after reaching on a throwing error by third baseman Trevor Plouffe in the bottom of the seventh. He later scored on Nick Hundley's three-run homer.
The ailing Orioles infield is already without third baseman Manny Machado (season-ending right knee surgery) and first baseman Steve Pearce (right abdominal strain).
In his past 22 games entering Monday, Hardy was hitting .333/.386/.568 with five home runs and 17 RBIs. Hardy is also one of the Orioles' best hitters with runners in scoring position, batting .350 in those situations.
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