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Maddon dealing with Rays' suspensions

Maddon dealing with Rays' suspensions

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ARLINGTON -- Joe Maddon has three different scenarios for his pitching, all of which are contingent upon how the suspensions go for James Shields and Edwin Jackson.

So for right now, unless something changes in the next couple of days, Jackson, whose suspension is supposed to begin Friday, will start Monday against the Angels and Shields, who appealed his suspension that was supposed to begin immediately, will pitch the following night in Anaheim.

Shields will likely drop his appeal after pitching Tuesday, which might push back the beginning of Jackson's suspension.

The Rays had five players suspended Friday for a total of 23 games stemming from Thursday night's fracas with the Red Sox, but figuring out when Jackson (five games), Shields (six games), Carl Crawford (four games), Akinori Iwamura (three games), and Jonny Gomes (five games) would serve their suspensions has Maddon trying to remain flexible.

The only thing the Rays manager was sure of was that Gomes had dropped his appeal and he would begin serving his five-game suspension Saturday night.

"I'm going one day at a time," Maddon said. "Right now I'm dealing with Jon not being available."

About dropping his appeal, Gomes noted: "I didn't think I had a very good case to appeal."

But the burly slugger of the Rays said he is frustrated just the same.

"I want to be in the game," Gomes said. "You want to be suited up and a part of what's going on."

Maddon said not having Gomes would affect the Rays for the remainder of their series with Texas as the Rangers have two left-handers in the bullpen. Gomes could have been used as a pinch-hitter. In addition, Gomes would have started Monday night against Angels lefty Joe Saunders.

Bill Chastain is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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