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Dukes returns, but not in lineup



Rays outfielder Elijah Dukes returned for today's day game after yesterday's "personal day," but he wasn't in the Rays starting lineup.

Manager Joe Maddon said the decision was two-fold. He said that he wanted to put Jonny Gomes, recalled Tuesday night from Triple-A Durham, in the lineup since he's played on a daily basis with the Bulls. Maddon said he also didn't want to place Dukes in the lineup so soon after "the events of yesterday," when the Times reported that Dukes allegedly got a 17-year-old foster child living with a relative of his pregnant. The Times originally reported the story on Tuesday night.

However, Maddon said Dukes would be available today as a defensive substitution or a pinch hitter.

"I won't hesitate to use him," Maddon said.

Maddon also said Dukes will be on the team flight to Colorado and make the team's six game road trip against the Rockies and Diamondbacks.

Dukes was nowhere to be seen in the Rays clubhouse before the game.

Delmon Young will make the start in center for the second straight game.

Here's the Rays' full lineup:
Iwamura, 3B
Harris, SS
Crawford, LF
Norton, DH
Pena, 1B
Wigginton, 2B
Young, CF
Casanova, C
Gomes, RF

[Last modified: Monday, December 21, 2009 12:31am]


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