Polanco out with back injury

Placido Polanco will not start in tonight's NLDS Game 1 against the Cincinnati Reds. (Steven M. Falk / Staff File Photo)

In a shocking development, the Phillies will be without their starting third baseman in Game 1. Placido Polanco is out of the starting lineup with what is being described as a back injury -- not an injury to his left arm/elbow, which has bothered him all season and will require off-season surgery.

In his place, Wilson Valdez -- the minor-league free agent whose legend appears to grow by the day -- will bat eighth and play third. Jimmy Rollins will lead off. Shane Victorino will bat second.

When asked about his elbow Tuesday, Polanco said he felt great after a fourth cortisone shot.

"Yes, less tired," he said. "A little stronger."

Of course, no one asked him about his back. There are indications this injury is not serious. For one, the Phillies could have waited until 10 a.m. Wednesday to submit rosters. If Polanco's injury was that serious, they could have left him off the roster. But he remains on it.

More to come...