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For starters, Rays-O's, with Brignac again



UPDATE, 5:52: Joe Maddon said he gave Brignac another start based on his strong showing on Monday, essentially having him in the lineup instead of Gabe Gross, with Ben Zobrist shifting to rightfield. Akinori Iwamura was going to be off either way.

Maddon also said they have looked at the innings total of their young starters - Jeff Niemann has 161.1 going into tonight's game, David Price 144 (109.2 in the majors, 34.1 at Triple-A) and Wade Davis 168.1 (9.2 in the majors, 158.2 at Triple-A) -  and don't feel that any need to be shutdown before the end of the season. 

DEVELOPING: Having snapped their 11-game losing streak on Monday, the Rays are looking to put together a two-game winning streak tonight.

And rookie INF Reid Brignac, the offensive star of Monday's win with four hits, including his first big-league homer, will be in the lineup again, this time at second base.

Also, RHP Jeff Niemann will seek to further his bid for the AL Rookie of the Year award, looking for his 13th win, which would match Detroit's Rick Porcello for most among AL rookies.

Here is the Rays lineup:
Bartlett ss
Crawford lf
Longoria 3b
Zobrist rf
Burrell dh
Aybar 1b
Upton cf
Navarro c
Brignac 2b
Niemann p

And for the O's
Pie cf
Fiorentino lf
Roberts 2b
Markakis rf
Mora 3b
Scott dh
Wieters 2
Aubrey 1b
Izturis ss
Berken p

[Last modified: Monday, December 21, 2009 12:51am]


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