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For starters, Rays at Twins, with Pena seventh

Update 6:30 p.m. Manager Joe Maddon said moving Carlos Pena down from cleanup to seventh - like he did earlier this season - was to lighten his load a bit, sensing the slugger was frustrated.

"It seems like he's adding a little bit more to his plate than he needs to," Maddon said. "So I wanted to take a little bit off. "

Maddon said he met with Pena today and he understood, and hopes he'll respond like he did after the same move in early June, homering in a club record six straight games.

"I wanted him to back off, like we did a couple (weeks) ago and he took off with a bunch of homers hit in the seventh hole," Maddon said. "And that's all it is about, back him off, do something to help us win tonight, pure and simple."

*Maddon said Willy Aybar, who hits cleanup tonight, will also be back in the lineup Saturday. Though Maddon would like to get Aybar in the lineup more, he also likes having the switch-hitter available off the bench like Thursday, when he delivered the go-ahead RBI single in the 10th.

*CF B.J. Upton's sore right quad is a lot better - good enough that he ran the bases before Friday's game - and Maddon said he's available to play defense and hit later tonight, and there's a really good shot at him being back in the lineup tommorrow.

Developing: The Rays, coming off a dramatic come-from-behind win Thursday, will face the Twins again with another different lineup.

Struggling Carlos Pena has been dropped from cleanup to seventh I the order (Willy Aybar is cleanup) and B.J. Upton's sore right quad isn't quite ready, so he's out of the lineup for the fourth straight day.

Rays lineup
Zobrist cf
Crawford lf
Longoria 3b
Aybar dh
Joyce rf
Shoppach c
Pena 1b
Rodriguez 2b
Brignac ss
Price lhp

[Last modified: Sunday, August 1, 2010 12:15am]


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