Kevin Kiermaier's return to Rays lineup to be delayed past Aug. 8
CF Kevin Kiermaier's return to the Rays lineup will be delayed past his Aug. 8 target due to back trouble.
Kiermaier has been having "siginificant pain" when bending to field ground balls, manager Kevin Cash said, and has been shut down from all baseball activities for the rest of the week.
"Little movements are grabbing him,'' Cash said. "I don't think this is a major thing but it is going to derail Aug. 8-9 I would think.''
Cash said the Rays are confident rest and treatment will help, but given that Kiermaier has been out since early June and played only two rehab games before the back flared up Saturday, he won't be back as planned on Aug. 8. A mid-August return seems the best-case scenario at this point.
With Kiermaier out due to the right hip fracture, the Rays have gone 23-22. Mallex Smith has been the primary replacement, hitting .293-2-10 with a .759 OPS.