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Sore right knee keeps Franklin out of lineup

SEATTLE -- Mariners rookie second baseman Nick Franklin was held out of Thursday's series finale against the Red Sox after a bothersome right knee situation continued to plague the 22-year-old.

Franklin was taken out in the seventh inning of Wednesday's game when the knee flared up, but manager Eric Wedge hopes he can be back in the lineup by Friday when Seattle opens a three-game set with the Angels.

"It just hasn't got any better," Franklin said. "It's been almost the same since we left Cincinnati. It just needs a little time to get better."

Franklin's problems began when he bunted a ball off his leg last Friday against the Reds. Franklin was limited to a pinch-hitting appearance the following day, but he started the ensuing four games before finally getting a rest Thursday.

"It just affected his quad yesterday," Wedge said. "It's still off his knee, but he was having trouble firing his quad yesterday. He's able to fire it today, so I'm hopeful he'll be ready tomorrow. He did it on a play up the middle yesterday, just reirritated it."

Franklin said he felt the knee on a wide throw from shortstop Brad Miller in the sixth, as well as after a fifth-inning strikeout.

"It was just the change of direction off the leg," he said. "And then the strikeout, one of the pitches I swung at, I really rotated on it. But just really the whole day, it's just hard to describe it, but that very last swing on that strikeout there was something not right.

"I'll take it day by day and hopefully it'll get better soon. When you're constantly thinking about how you want to walk, it's not really the ideal situation."

Franklin has hit .275 with six home runs and 19 RBIs in his first 40 Major League games, though he's batted just .216 in nine games in July.

Greg Johns is a reporter for Follow him on Twitter @GregJohnsMLB as well as his Mariners Musings blog.
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