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Tampa Bay Rays minor-league coach Bill Moloney recovering from shooting

ANAHEIM, Calif. — Double-A pitching coach Bill Moloney is recovering after being shot in the thigh during a mugging at his Montgomery, Ala., apartment after Monday's game.

Moloney, 56, was said to be resting relatively comfortably though on crutches as the bullet went cleanly through his left leg. He also received six stitches to close a gash above his left eye as the assailants got all of $20.

"He's got some pain — obviously, that's to be expected — but he feels good," Biscuits manager Billy Gardner Jr. said before Tuesday's game.

Moloney is expected to return to the dugout when he feels up to it, perhaps within a week, with roving coordinator Dick Bosman, who was already in Montgomery on assignment, filling in.

"He needs to take it at his pace. He knows better than anybody how he feels," Gardner said. "It will be his decision. The good thing is he's doing good."

Moloney is in his second season with the Biscuits and fifth in the Rays organization.

Police said two unknown people approached Moloney, produced a handgun and demanded property, the Montgomery Advertiser reported. Moloney was struck with the handgun and shot once in the upper thigh before the subjects fled.

In a statement, the Rays said: "Bill is in good spirits and resting comfortably at his home in Montgomery and hopes to return to the Biscuits soon."

Moloney and other Biscuits coaches were already planning to move from the east Montgomery apartment complex before the incident.

FLU CREW: Most of the Rays affected by the stomach flu were feeling better Tuesday except for 3B Evan Longoria, who also had a fever in excess of 100 and was on an IV pregame to replace fluids.

"None of these other guys have really run a fever, that's the odd part about it," manager Joe Maddon said.

CF B.J. Upton and RHP Adam Russell returned to active duty after sitting out Monday. 1B Casey Kotchman and 3B Sean Rodriguez played through it Monday, though Rodriguez was so sick he threw up during the game (though not on the field).

Despite being shorthanded, the Rays won 5-1, primarily due to a strong start by LHP David Price and three RBIs from CF Justin Ruggiano, who replaced Upton. If they needed reinforcements, Maddon had the other starters and reliever Andy Sonnanstine in cleats and on call.

STARRY-EYED: Longoria, the elected starter in 2009-10, continues to run a distant third with 939,549 votes in the latest AL All-Star balloting update, trailing Yankees 3B Alex Rodriguez (1,515,188) and Texas' Adrian Beltre 1,224,381. 2B Ben Zobrist (518,942) and DH Johnny Damon (544,421) rank fifth at their positions, OF Matt Joyce 14th (497,847) and Sam Fuld 15th (433,784). Voting continues through June 24 in stadiums and June 30 online. … Maddon said if RHP James Shields, who takes a 5-4, 2.77 mark into tonight's start, maintains his performance, he "definitely should belong on the All-Star team."

REHAB REPORT: INF Elliot Johnson won't come off the DL today when eligible but could be back by the weekend after testing his sprained left knee in a rehab stint Thursday-Friday for Triple-A Durham. … RHP Jeff Niemann (lower back strain) makes the second of his three scheduled rehab starts tonight for Durham, on schedule to rejoin the Rays on June 18.

MINOR MATTERS: INF Derek Dietrich, a 2010 second-round pick, was one of four Bowling Green Hot Rods named to the Class A Midwest League All-Star Game, joining INF Phil Wunderlich, LHPs C.J. Riefenhauser and RHP Eliazer Suero. … Montgomery RHP Joe Cruz (shoulder) went on the DL. Biscuits LHP Matt Moore and Class A Charlotte LHP Kyle Lobstein were named league pitchers of the week in their leagues.

MISCELLANY: Damon extended his streak of reaching base to 33 games, four shy of Ben Grieve's 2001 team mark. … Shields, who grew up in Southern California, rented a suite for his family to watch tonight's game. … Joyce is tied for second in the majors in hitting at .340.

Tampa Bay Rays minor-league coach Bill Moloney recovering from shooting 06/08/11 [Last modified: Wednesday, June 8, 2011 7:53pm]

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