New AL All-Star Brandon Lowe’s playing status in doubt
ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) — Tampa Bay Rays second baseman Brandon Lowe was added to the AL All-Star team Wednesday but the rookie may not be able to play in next Tuesday night’s game because of a right leg injury.
Lowe was forced out of Tuesday night’s game soon after sharply fouling a ball off his leg in the sixth inning of a 6-3 win over Baltimore. He finished the at-bat, grounding a single to left, but struggled to reach first base.
“As of right now, nothing is really set in stone,” Lowe said Wednesday. “We’re still looking at stuff, doing some treatment. Hopefully the next couple days we’ll know more but as of right now it’s too soon to say anything.”
Lowe and center fielder Kevin Kiermaier were both out of the lineup for Wednesday night’s game with Baltimore.
Kiermaier was scratched about 90 minutes before first pitch because of left wrist soreness.
X-rays on Lowe taken Tuesday night were negative. He is hitting .276 with a team-leading 16 homers and 49 RBIs.
Tampa Bay manager Kevin Cash is hopeful the injury is nothing more than a deep bruise.
“Obviously still a lot of pain,” Cash said. “We expected that he’d be in a lot of pain. Everything we’ve looked at has been negative so far. We should have a better idea tomorrow.”
Lowe plans to attend the All-Star Game even if he can’t play.
“I’m extremely excited,” Lowe said. “It’s a huge honor.”
Lowe is taking the spot of Los Angeles Angels infielder Tommy La Stella as an injury replacement.
Pitcher Charlie Morton and outfielder Austin Meadows will also be representing the Rays.
Morton is scheduled to start Sunday against the AL East-leading New York Yankees, which will keep him from pitching for the AL squad.
Also, the Rays have put first baseman Ji-Man Choi on the 10-day injured list with a strained left ankle and recalled infielder Mike Brosseau from Triple-A Durham.
Choi is hitting .266 with nine homers and 33 RBIs in 70 games. He has just eight hits in his past 46 at-bats.
Choi, hurt running the bases Monday night, hopes to be back right after the All-Star break.
Tampa Bay dealt reliever Casey Sadler to the Los Angeles Dodgers for minor league right-hander Nathan Witt, who was assigned to Class A Bowling Green. Sadler had been designated for assignment on Saturday.
The Rays also traded minor league infielder-outfielder Andrew Velazquez to Cleveland for international signing bonus pool allotment.
Right-hander Jose De Leon, coming back from Tommy John surgery, was reinstated from the 60-day IL and optioned to Durham.
The moves were announced before Wednesday night’s game against Baltimore.