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Tulo returns from two-day break for groin strain

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DENVER -- His manager only gave him a coin flip's chance of playing Sunday, but Troy Tulowitzki was confident his right groin injury wouldn't cost him more than two games.

The All-Star shortstop must be pretty persuasive because he was back in the lineup Sunday, batting third for the series finale against the Dodgers.

"He made a lot of improvement yesterday," Rockies manager Walt Weiss said. "He came in today feeling even better."

Tulowitzki felt some tightness in his groin Thursday after legging out an infield single in the sixth inning of a 3-2 loss to the Dodgers. After a brief discussion with Weiss, Tulowitzki talked his way into remaining in the game. Weiss said he would have used a pinch-runner had Tulowitzki reached base again.

Weiss also said Tulowitzki was available as a pinch-hitter the past two games.

Tulowitzki entered Sunday leading the Majors in average (.350), on-base percentage (.441) and runs (66). His 18 home runs were the second most in the National League behind the Marlins' Giancarlo Stanton.

Starting in Tulowitzki's place the past two days, Josh Rutledge had one hit and six strikeouts in eight at-bats. He scored a run Saturday but also registered a throwing error.

Cody Ulm 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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