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Kevin Youkilis back on disabled list

ANAHEIM, Calif. -- New York Yankees third baseman Kevin Youkilis has been placed on the disabled list for the second time this season with a recurrence of lower-back pain.

This time, Youkilis -- who only returned to action on May 31 after missing 30 games -- reported numbness and loss of feeling in his right leg and foot. When the Yankees return to New York after Sunday's game with the Angels, Youkilis will remain behind to be examined by Dr. Robert Watkins, a spine surgeon in Marina Del Rey, Calif.

Watkins operated this week on New York Giants defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul.

"I've never had this before," said Youkilis, who was first placed on the DL on April 30 after reporting some stiffness and soreness in his lower back. "Basically, I had a little numbness in my big toe, but today I have a feeling like when your foot falls asleep or something. I basically have that feeling in my foot and calf area. Parts of my back have hurt before, a little tightness, but this is more like something hitting a nerve."

Youkilis played all 18 innings of the Yankees' 3-2 loss to the Athletics in Oakland on Thursday, and seemed to foretell his injury when he said, "You never know after these games how you wake up the next morning, but hopefully everything's good."

Youkils, who spent Thursday night at his home in the Bay Area, awoke in discomfort Friday morning and called Yankees trainer Steve Donohue before boarding a flight to Los Angeles. By midafternoon, the Yankees had decided to put Youkilis on the DL just 14 days after he had returned to action.

Since his return, Youkilis has just five hits in 41 at-bats, including 0-for-7 with three strikeouts in Thursday's marathon -- but said the back injury has not affected his swing.

"No, I think there's lot of different reasons involved," he said. "I don't think this is the sole reason."

Youkilis was signed to a one-year, $12 million contract in January as a replacement for the injured Alex Rodriguez. But he has missed nearly half of the 66 games the Yankees have played, and is hitting just .219 with two home runs and eight RBIs.

"For me, personally, I just want to be out there playing," he said. "It stinks. But also, I really got to worry about my health in a lot of ways. You don't know what this stuff can do to you. Sometimes, you can have something like this and it can affect you the rest of your life."

In addition to placing Youkilis on the DL, the Yankees optioned Adam Warren, who pitched six scoreless innings on Thursday, to Triple-A Scranton. They also recalled two players, RHP Chris Bootcheck as bullpen insurance, and Thomas Neal, a right handed-hitting outfielder who is in their starting lineup for Friday night's game against the Angels.