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Rays-Rangers Wed. lineups

Posted Apr 11, 2007 by Marc Lancaster

Updated Apr 11, 2007 at 07:18 PM

ARLINGTON, Texas - Beautiful day here, just in time to head into the Minnesota snow. Little lineup flip for the Rays today.

Baldelli CF
Zobrist SS
Crawford LF
Wigginton DH
Young RF
Iwamura 3B
Pena 1B
Navarro C
Upton 2B
Shields P

Lofton CF
Catalanotto DH
Young SS
Teixeira 1B
Sosa RF
Blalock 3B
Wilkerson LF
Laird C
Kinsler 2B
Tejeda P

Following up on the Crawford-Baldelli swap, Joe Maddon said he thought tonight would be a good time to try it, maybe break some of the negative momentum from the past few days. He said he wouldn’t have done it if Rocco hadn’t been moving around so well on his hamstring. Still, look for Rocco to DH two of the games in Minnesota.

“Neither one came to me and talked about it,” said Maddon. “This is just an observation on my part based on last year. I thought Rocco did a nice job leading off and I thought Carl did a nice job hitting behind him. Coming into this camp, I was concerned that after they both hit, the drop-off was rather dramatic. But right now, it appears as though the lineup has balanced itself out pretty nicely, so it’s more comfortable to do this right now.”

Elijah Dukes, who started six of the first seven games, is just getting a night off and will be in center field tomorrow.

Also—talked to Jonny Gomes and he was extremely upbeat despite his reduced role. He said he hasn’t worked this hard in a long time as far as doing extra hitting and conditioning work, and there was no need for Maddon or anyone else to reassure him that he would get some playing time eventually.

“I don’t think they need to tell me anything,” said Gomes. “He writes the lineup and that’s just it. I’m a grown man, I don’t need a pat on the back or anything. He’s the boss. It seems to be working out fine – the boys are hitting.”

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