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C Hernandez, INF/OF Johnson called up



UPDATE, 3:15: The Rays have called up Johnson and Hernandez, and to make room on the 40-man roster designated for assignment Joel Guzman. Johnson may start in leftfield tonight.

Johnson spent most of the 2005-07 seasons with the A's, and hit a career high 18 homers last year.

UPDATE, 2:54: Still nothing official from the Rays, but there's reason to expect INF/OF Dan Johnson and C Michel Hernandez to both be joining the team today.

Johnson, acquired in April after being let go by Oakland, had a tremendous season at Durham, hitting .307 with 25 homers and 83 RBIs in 113 games. However, he is primarily a first baseman and DH, playing eight games in the outfield (and 10 at third base).

Both Johnson and Hernandez would have to be added to the 40-man roster.

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C Michel Hernandez, acquired from the Pirates organization on Aug. 31 to help Triple-A Durham's postseason efforts, appears headed to help the Rays, who are expected to add several players before tonight's game.

With backup C Shawn Riggans expected to be sidelined at least three days with inflammation and a possible infection in his right knee, the Rays have only just-called up John Jaso as their backup to Dioner Navarro. That may lead them to Hernandez, a 30-year-old who has extensive Triple-A experience (including 51 games last season with Durham) and played five games for the Yankees in 2003.

Hernandez would have to be added to the 40-man roster, so another move would have to be made. The Rays had veteran Mike DiFelice at Triple-A all season but he was released at the end of the regular season with Jaso was promoted.

[Last modified: Monday, December 21, 2009 12:38am]


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