Make us your home page

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Tampa Bay Rays encouraged by Evan Longoria's progress in rehab

Evan Longoria has played four games in five days as the DH for Triple-A Durham and could rejoin the Rays when they return home Friday.

Associated Press

Evan Longoria has played four games in five days as the DH for Triple-A Durham and could rejoin the Rays when they return home Friday.

OAKLAND, Calif. — Evan Longoria isn't quite ready to end his rehab assignment and rejoin the Rays, but manager Joe Maddon spoke as optimistically as he has in months about the slugger's return to the lineup.

"It's moving along pretty nicely," Maddon said. "It's very exciting. I am encouraged."

Longoria on Monday played his fourth game, in a five-day span, as the DH for Triple-A Durham, going 1-for-3 with a walk. Overall, Longoria is 2-for-12 with four walks.

When Longoria headed to Durham last week, Maddon said his rehab assignment would last only three to four games, but he has since revised that. The soonest Longoria would join the Rays would seem to be when they return home Friday.

"When exactly I'm not sure," Maddon said, "but I know he's making progress and he's feeling good."

The plan to limit Longoria to DH duties has apparently worked, as Maddon said the reports on his left hamstring, which was partially torn April 30, have been positive.

"He's getting better," Maddon said. "We've been very cautious on his rehab assignment. The reports daily are that he's feeling good. He felt really good (Monday). There's been no setbacks, and that's been a good thing."

The reports on Longoria aren't the only good ones.

• DH Luke Scott on Monday took swings — about 30, albeit with the ball on a tee — for the first time since going back on the DL July 21 with a mild oblique strain. He remains confident he will return "around" his Sunday eligible date. Given the progression of drills he has to get through, and another short rehab assignment, a target of the end of next week is probably more realistic.

• RHP Jeff Niemann looked sharp in another bullpen session and is set to throw a simulated game Friday, with the plan, if all goes well, to head out on a rehab assignment of three or four starts that would have him back in the rotation before the end of August. "He threw the ball really well and he came out smiling broadly, feeling very good about it," Maddon said.

SICK BAY: RHP Jeremy Hellickson, who threw up several times while pitching Sunday, said he felt "a little better" and was able to eat, as well as run around a bit on the field playing Frisbee before batting practice.

A GAME: RHP James Shields feels he is pitching better than his results have shown and expects a payoff soon. "Last start (in Baltimore on Thursday) I thought I pitched pretty well considering it was pretty hot," he said. "I gave up two hits and they cost five runs, unfortunately that was the case and I walked a couple guys. Other than that I feel really good. We've been trying to stay consistent with the routine and I think I'm pitching okay right now. Hopefully I can get on a nice little roll these last two months here."

MISCELLANY: The 23 scoreless innings streak the Rays took into Monday's game was one shy of the team record, set May 8-11, 2008. … Montgomery RHP Alex Colome was named the Double-A Southern League's pitcher of the week after going 2-0, 1.15.

Tampa Bay Rays encouraged by Evan Longoria's progress in rehab 07/30/12 [Last modified: Monday, July 30, 2012 11:30pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. This Tampa Bay Lightning wing rides the newest wave of fan interaction

    Lightning Strikes

    TAMPA — There are photos of Lightning fan Shaun Egger as a toddler at center ice at the then-Thunderome, aka Tropicana Field. He's played in the Lightning's high school hockey league for Palm Harbor University. But his closest personal encounter with players had been waving through a crowd after a training camp …

    Tampa Bay Lightning player J.T. Brown wears his anti UV glasses as he talks over the headset with a hockey fan while they play against each other on line in an XBOX NHL video game in Brown's game room at his home in south Tampa. The fan chose to be the Washington Capitals and Brown, of course, was the Tampa Bay Lightning. Brown interacts with fans through video game systems as he streams the games live on Twitch with plans for the proceeds to go to charity.
  2. ‘Biggest fight' behind her, Petra Kvitova returns ahead of schedule


    PARIS — Five months after a home invader's knife sliced into her left hand, Petra Kvitova will return to competitive tennis at the French Open, a last-minute decision to make her comeback earlier than expected.

    Petra Kvitova adjusts her hair during a news conference at Roland Garros Stadium, where she will make her tennis return at the French Open. Kvitova's left hand was badly injured by a knife-wielding intruder in December; she has recovered ahead of schedule. [Associated Press]
  3. Video: Rays Souza on that oh-so-bad dive, and reaction from Twins fans


    What was Rays RF Steven Souza Jr. thinking when he made that oh-so-bad dive for a ball in the seventh inning Friday? Well, we'll let him tell you ...

  4. What was Rays RF Steven Souza Jr. thinking on that comically bad dive?


    What could Rays RF Steven Souza Jr. been thinking in the seventh inning Friday when he dove for a ball and came up yards short?

    Actually, he insisted after all the laughing, teasing and standing ovation from the Twins fans was done, it was a matter of self-preservation.

  5. Rays at Twins, 2:10 p.m. Saturday, Minneapolis

    The Heater

    Today: at Twins

    2:10, Target Field, Minneapolis

    TV/radio: Fox Sports Sun, 620-AM, 680-AM (Spanish)