MIAMI -- Placido Polanco's back has been an issue for some time, but he figures a couple more innings at the All-Star Game next Tuesday in Phoenix can't hurt.
Fans voted Polanco, 35, as the National League's starting third baseman. He said because this might be his final All-Star Game and because he likely only will play a couple innings, he plans to play.
"I won't probably make it any worse," Polanco said.
Phillies manager Charlie Manuel said he is OK with Polanco playing.
"I think it's a big honor for him," he said. "Actually, he starts the game at third base, and he's probably going to get one at-bat, maybe two. I think that's not going to hurt him."
Polanco has hit just .161 (14-for-87) with two doubles, one home run and eight RBIs in 24 games since June 5. He has hit just .219 since April ended.
Polanco said he has considered getting a cortisone injection to help his back pain. (Polanco said Sunday in Toronto he has a pinched nerve, which sometimes causes numbness in his leg.) But he said after receiving several cortisone injections last season for an injured elbow, he wants to stay away from shots.
"When I'm done playing baseball, I don't want to be relying on shots," he said.
So then, does Polanco just play through it the rest of the season?
"Yeah, but hopefully it gets better," he said.
So far it hasn't.