Rays expect Longoria to return on Monday

Rays expect Longoria to return on Monday

Rays expect Longoria to return on Monday
PORT CHARLOTTE, Fla. -- Evan Longoria dodged a bullet in Thursday's intrasquad game when he got hit on the right hand by a Matt Bush fastball.

The Rays third baseman suffered no broken bones, just swelling, leaving him day to day for when he will play.

"Obviously, thank God the X-rays were negative," Longoria said. " ... Just let the swelling get out of there and there's really nothing left to do. ... As soon as I can pick up a bat, I'll be back out there.

"Usually, if there's a broken bone or something, you can tell right off the bat. It did get pretty sore when I got back into the training room. That was a little bit of a concern for me. But, obviously, X-rays tell the truth. There were no breaks or anything. I think once that worry is out of your head, you just let the swelling go down and go from there."

Longoria felt bad for Bush.

"I just told him it's part of the game," Longoria said. "It's really unavoidable. More unfortunate for him. I know he was pretty nervous about the whole situation. You know, he felt terrible. I just assured him that I was not upset, it's just part of the game."

Longoria said he didn't expect the injury to keep him out of the lineup for more than a couple of days.

"It felt better waking up today," Longoria said. "It's the same song and dance when we go through this with me. As soon as I feel good and I'm able to get back out there I will. ... It [stinks] we're a couple of days away from starting games and I probably won't be able to play in at least the first [exhibition game]. Then again, I still have hope. ... Just a matter of when I can pick up a bat and throw a ball."

Rays manager Joe Maddon, whose team opens Grapefruit League play on Saturday, said that a Monday return to action for Longoria was a "smart guess."