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Ludwick close to 100 percent after bruising toe

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CHICAGO --- Reds outfielder Ryan Ludwick was back in the starting lineup Sunday after missing Saturday's game with a bruised left big toe. Ludwick fouled a pitch off his foot in his first at-bat of Friday's game and was replaced in left by Roger Bernadina in the bottom of the eighth.

Reds manager Bryan Price said the bruise was "pretty painful" for about 24 hours but that Ludwick was available as a pinch-hitter Saturday. Price said Ludwick is good enough to play after showing he was capable of playing the outfield without restriction and that the team is confident he'll be "pretty close to 100 percent today."

"I think it might be full speed but a little tender," Price said. "I think if we felt like he was restricted in his ability to defend -- my concern isn't his hitting, it's his outfield play. And you don't want to give up anything in the outfield when you've got a couple other guys, healthy outfielders, on the bench.

"Just want to make sure that he's able to go out there and sprint and cut and do all the things that he needs to do to play good defense because I don't think he feels at all that it's going to affect his hitting."

Joe Popely is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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