PHOENIX - Phillies first baseman Ryan Howard will not be in the starting lineup in the three-game series against the Arizona Diamondbacks because of a sore left quadriceps that has been bothering him since spring training.

The series started tonight at Chase Field.

Howard, manager Charlie Manuel and athletic trainer Scott Sheridan met today and decided that the injury is enough of a concern that he should not play. Howard, who took batting and fielding practice before tonight's game, will be examined by team physician Michael Ciccotti on Friday in Philadelphia.

Howard is hitting .200 with five home runs and 19 RBIs this season. He said his thigh problem has affected his ability to hit.

He is expected to be available for pinch-hitting duty.