Stud Rays third baseman Evan Longoria was removed from Saturday's game in the sixth inning with what was being termed a sore left oblique. Initially, Longoria was optimistic that he'd only be out a few days, but after undergoing further evaluation on Sunday, it was determined that Longoria has an oblique strain that will knock him out for at least much of the rest of the month, and the slugger has been placed on the disabled list.
After Saturday's game, Longoria told reporters that he'd felt discomfort in batting practice and probably should have sat out altogether. For as long as he's out - and he should return in late April or early May - Sean Rodriguez will cover third base, and Felipe Lopez has been recalled from AAA to serve as depth off the bench.
Longoria had been hitless in five at bats this year before getting pulled. With no further complications, the Rays should survive his absence, but this isn't how any contender wants to begin their season.
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