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Reyes to be activated Friday

Reyes to be activated Friday

ST. PETERSBURG -- Al Reyes is ready to come off the disabled list on Friday, while Troy Percival and Jason Bartlett are getting closer to returning.

Reyes has been on the 15-day disabled list with right shoulder tendinitis since June 13. Reyes said he felt good pitching in back-to-back games recently, and if all goes as planned, the veteran right-hander will be activated prior to Friday's game against the Blue Jays. A corresponding move will not be necessary, since shortstop Reid Brignac was optioned to Triple-A Durham on Sunday.

Percival, who suffered a left hamstring strain on June 30 and leads the team with 19 saves, threw 30 pitches to Jonny Gomes, Willy Aybar and Gabe Gross on Thursday. According to Rays manager Joe Maddon, "Percy did nice.

"He was actually a little better than I anticipated. ... Thirty pitches and a lot of life. It's kind of optimistic right now."

Percival, who arrived in St. Petersburg at 6 a.m. ET on Thursday after taking a red-eye flight from Los Angeles, seemed pleased.

"Probably the best I've thrown since the first of the season," Percival said.

Maddon wants Percival to get cleared by the Rays' medical staff before making any decision on when he might return.

"He did well, he threw the ball really well," Maddon said. "He was landing without any hesitation. He was finishing like he normally does. The ball was really alive at the end. And he had the look -- he had the right look, like he wasn't trying to put something by me. I'm optimistic about what I saw, but I still want to talk to the medical people first."

Shortstop Jason Bartlett has been out since July 3 with a right knee sprain, and the only sure thing regarding his progress is that he will not be activated before Friday night's game.

"He's still a little bit stiff," Maddon said. "I can tell from his face he's not quite right yet."

Bartlett told reporters he still has a little trouble moving to his left. He wore an elastic brace on his right knee while going through drills during Thursday's workout.

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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