PHILADELPHIA -- Astros left-hander Tim Byrdak had not allowed a run in 28 of his last 29 outings entering Tuesday, which is even more impressive when you consider Byrdak has been battling through some abdominal and back issues.
Byrdak, who was on the disabled list in May with a strained hamstring that was related to an irritated disk in his back, is still feeling some discomfort. He believes a sports hernia could be causing his back to stiffen, and was hoping to get examined while in Philadelphia by Dr. William Meyers, the same doctor who examined teammate Brian Moehler's groin injury last week.
But Meyers was out of town this week.
"It's nothing I can't handle, but it's a nagging deal," Byrdak said. "If it's tight [near his lower abdomen], it's pulling at other places. If I could get that to relax, maybe everything else would relax and maybe it takes the focus off that more. I've never had anything like this."
Byrdak, who had cortisone shots in May and then again in early June to help his back, hopes to get an MRI at some point to help diagnose the problem. He said he might have even explore having surgery in the offseason to fix the problem.
"It's responded pretty well, but it's a nagging thing," he said. "You want to wake up and feel pretty good. You just want to wake up and not feel anything and be good to go. We're still going to get to that point and making adjustments here and there and doing what I can do."