Phillies third baseman Placido Polanco sat out Game 1 of the NL division series because of a sore back.

Wilson Valdez played third and batted eighth against the Cincinnati Reds. He was 1 for 3 with a run scored.

Manager Charlie Manuel said Polanco was sore and stiff during Tuesday's workout and felt even worse when he arrived at the ballpark for Game 1. Polanco told Manuel his back hurt when he bent over and turned left to right.

Manuel, who doesn't know how Polanco hurt his back, was concerned he might not have him for Friday's Game 2. Polanco expects to play.

"It feels a lot better today, and tomorrow I expect to practice and then play Friday," he said.

Polanco said he didn't think he could've pinch-hit in Philadelphia's 4-0 win on Wednesday.

He said his back problem flared up Tuesday evening.

"It was just a spasm," he said. "I'm moving better though, I'm breathing better. I've never had this before, especially the way it happened, doing nothing on that off day."

Polanco hit .298 this season with six homers and 52 RBIs. He had been bothered this season by a sore left elbow.

"His elbow's the one," Manuel said. "Every now and then, he did say something back in the summer about his shoulder at one time, but to my knowledge, this is the first time his back's flared up."