KISSIMMEE, Fla. -- Astros right fielder Hunter Pence, who needed three stitches in his right shin to close a gash suffered in Wednesday's game, was held out of the starting lineup on Thursday by manager Brad Mills as a precaution. Pence said that he could have played.
"He came in and lobbied to play, but in a situation like that, he's got to get a tetanus shot and is doing some other things," Mills said. "He's going to through all the drills and see how he feels, and we'll put him back in there [on Friday] night.
"We still have a few more days for him to play as we move forward, but to put him in right away after having stitches put in [on Wednesday], I'm not comfortable with that, and neither are the trainers. That's the bottom line. He'll do all the work and do everything he can, and if everything's OK he'll be back in there [on Friday]."
Pence's leg was cut as slid into home plate in the fifth inning of Wednesday's win over the Pirates in Bradenton, Fla. Pence went 3-for-3 in the game and hit his first homer of the spring.