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Rocking Cleveland, without Crawford ...



Manager Joe Maddon is resting struggling LF Carl Crawford the final day before the All-Star break, and Crawford, whose left hamstring has been bothering him, said he welcomed the chance for the extra day off. He is in a career-worst 0-for-25 skid.

As a result, Jonny Gomes is in leftfield, and Gabe Gross in rightfield, though against Indians starter Jeremy Sowers. Plus, All-Star C Dioner Navarro is off, with Shawn Riggans behind the plate.

Also, the Rays will wear their blue batting practice jersies, an attempt to change their luck.

Maddon also said that LHP Scott Kazmir - who starts today - "probably" won't be allowed to pitch in Tuesday's All-Star Game. Maddon has already talked to AL/Boston manager Terry Francona about it.

"We're probably going to have him not pitch in the All-Star Game,'' Maddon said before Sunday's game. "We would prefer that he would not.'''

Executive VP Andrew Friedman said, however, that the decision was not final and could change depending on how Kazmir feels after pitching Sunday.

As for the lineups, as the Rays hope to break a season-long six-game losing streak, during which they have scored only 11 runs and hit .200:

Iwamura, 2b
Aybar, dh
Upton, cf
Pena, 1b
Longoria, 3b
Gomes, lf
Riggans, c
Zobrist, ss
Gross, rf
Kazmir, p

Sizemore, cf
Carroll, 2b
Francisco, lf
Peralta, ss
Blake, 1b
Garko, dh
Marte, 3b
Fasano, c
Gutierrez, rf
Sowers, p

[Last modified: Monday, December 21, 2009 12:36am]


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