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Wednesday, Aug 20, 2014

Rays' Longoria leaves game with injury

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Published:   |   Updated: June 29, 2013 at 12:09 AM

ST. PETERSBURG Tampa Bay Rays third baseman Evan Longoria left Tropicana Field with his right foot in a boot after leaving the game against the Detroit Tigers in the second inning because he irritated the plantar fasciitis in the foot.

Longoria will be reevaluated this afternoon.

"We'll know more (today)," Rays manager Joe Maddon said. "Of course I'm concerned, but I don't know to the level yet until I get more information (today)."

Longoria is the only Ray to have started every game this season, but Maddon expects that streak to end tonight.

"I would imagine he's not going to play (today) or the next day," Maddon said. "We'll just see how it plays out and then we'll make our determination."

Longoria has been battling plantar fasciitis for several weeks. It flared up during the previous homestand and limited him to the role of designated hitter during the four-game series with the Royals.

After the off day June 17, Longoria returned to third base for the doubleheader against the Red Sox in Boston and has played there ever since.

Longoria appeared to pull up as he neared first base Friday during his second inning at-bat. He hit a ground ball up the middle that Tigers second baseman Omar Infante fielded behind second base. Infante made the throw to first in time to get Longoria.

Kelly Johnson, who played third base during the series against Kansas City, replaced Longoria during the top of the third inning.

Longoria missed 85 games last season with a partially torn left hamstring. Maddon said he was going to try to protect Longoria's legs this year by having him DH the day before or the day after an off day. He also said he would give him the occasional rest, especially when playing on the unforgiving turf at Tropicana Field.

So far, the rest has been limited to DHing.

"Longo doesn't like to leave games," Maddon said. "He's had all these nagging things over the years and he's tried to play through them. He's played through a lot of different stuff. I guess it just started to bite too much and that's why we decided to do it."

The Rays play 12 of their next 16 games leading up to the All-Star Break at the Trop, and Maddon said that might play into the decision about a possible stint on the disabled list.

Add the four-day All-Star Break and Longoria could get 20 days to rest and heal his foot before the Rays resume the second half of the season July 19 in Toronto.

"If it indicates that, I'm sure that will happen," Maddon said. "I don't know enough at this point."

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