Brewers' Yelich returns after 2-game absence

Christian Yelich is back in the lineup for the Milwaukee Brewers, batting second and playing right field in the team's series opener against the Philadelphia Phillies on Friday night.

Yelich had missed the Brewers' last two games with back spasms.

He leads the major leagues with 19 home runs and is batting .325 with 41 RBIs in 44 games, including 42 starts.

Also Friday, Brewers right-hander Jimmy Nelson was reinstated from the 10-day injured list and optioned to Triple-A San Antonio.

"At this point, an option was kind of, for us, what we thought was best for the roster and best for him to continue on a regular schedule pitching," said Brewers manager Craig Counsell.

Nelson missed all of the 2018 season while recovering from surgery on his pitching shoulder. He was 12-6 with a 3.49 ERA and 199 strikeouts in 29 starts in 2017, finishing tied for ninth in NL Cy Young Award voting.

"We've got to look at our roster a little bit, too," Counsell said. "I think that's the other thing. We've got a bunch of guys pitching really well right now in our rotation. If you have injuries, I think it's a different conversation, or some other performance issues, a different conversation. At this point, I think part of it's Jimmy, part of it's we've got some guys throwing pretty well."