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Diaz scratched with discomfort in left hand

Rays still confident infielder won't need stint on injured list
@juanctoribio
May 22, 2019

ST. PETERSBURG -- Even after Yandy Díaz exited Sunday’s 13-5 loss to the Yankees with a left hand contusion when he was hit by a pitch, the Rays were hopeful that he would be in the starting lineup Tuesday against the Dodgers. Originally, Diaz was slated to hit leadoff against

ST. PETERSBURG -- Even after Yandy Díaz exited Sunday’s 13-5 loss to the Yankees with a left hand contusion when he was hit by a pitch, the Rays were hopeful that he would be in the starting lineup Tuesday against the Dodgers.

Originally, Diaz was slated to hit leadoff against left-hander Clayton Kershaw, but the infielder was a late scratch due to discomfort in the injured hand.

“His hand is still bothering him,” Rays manager Kevin Cash said. “He tried to swing; obviously it hurt him enough to take him out of the lineup. It’s unfortunate.”

Cash said that the team would continue to treat the hand throughout the night and hoped to have Diaz available off the bench. He also said that the team has done “a good degree of testings” on the hand, and it doesn't expect Diaz to go on the injured list.

“X-rays, CT scans, everything is negative,” Cash said. “It just got him in that boxer's area where you see a lot of broken bones, but it got him on the fatty part of the palm. It’s just really sore. It’s the bottom hand, [and] it pinched everything there with the knob and all that.”

With Diaz out of the lineup, outfielder Austin Meadows hit leadoff against the lefty Kershaw, with Ji-Man Choi replacing Diaz at first base.

Injury updates
To this point, it has been nothing but positive news for the Rays players currently on the injured list.

Matt Duffy cannot come off the 60-day injured list until Monday, but he’s getting closer to returning to the lineup, which should help the team, especially against left-handed pitching. Duffy, out with a left hamstring injury, has played third base, shortstop and left field during his rehab assignment to add to his versatility.

Duffy played seven innings in left field with Triple-A Durham on Tuesday, going 0-for-4.

“He’s getting closer,” Cash said. “I’m really encouraged by his last couple days in Port Charlotte. Starting to see the timing at the plate. [He] hit a home run, couple of singles; moving him all over the diamond and playing different spots.

“He can’t come off until the 27th at the soonest. Get him a couple games, get him some reps out there and see how he fits our roster when it’s time for him to come off [the injured list].”

Tyler Glasnow hasn’t thrown a baseball since landing on the injured list on May 11 with a mild right forearm strain. The right-hander said he feels like he has “progressed a lot faster than I thought it would.”

“I feel really good,” he said. “I’ve tested it and thrown a tennis ball. It feels really good. I’m thankful for the trainers. I’ve progressed really fast.”

Cash said that Glasnow is expected to play catch next week, and that the upcoming week will be another test in his recovery.

• Catchers Mike Zunino (left quad) and Michael Perez (right oblique) continued to progress, and the Rays are hopeful that they’re getting closer to getting their top two catchers back.

Zunino has been hitting and doing some light squatting, while Perez has been doing a lot of catching but has been limited to hitting off a tee due to some discomfort when he swings. Both feel they could be back in the lineup in the next couple of weeks.

“[I will] if everything progresses the way it’s been going,” Zunino said. “We’ve done a great job here, and guys have done a good job. I’m feeling good.”

Cash said they’ll get a better idea of where both catchers are when the team returns from a four-game trip to Cleveland starting on Thursday.

“I don’t think anything major will take place until we get back from the Cleveland series,” Cash said. “That following week, a chance to get out and do rehab assignments. But they’re both different injuries, obviously.”

Juan Toribio covers the Rays for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @juanctoribio.