Tampa Bay Rays to start the season without B.J. Upton

Tampa Bay Rays outfielder B.J. Upton will be beginning the regular season on the disabled list.

Upton collided with Desmond Jennings during a spring trading game on March 14. The two were carted off the field. Luckily, they only suffered from “general soreness.”

Upton however, has not appeared in a game since. The center fielder blames tightness in his back from keeping him off the field.

“Won’t loosen up,” he said. ”Other than that nothing major is going on. I just think it’s getting it loose and keeping it loose. I haven’t been able to do that yet.”

There is no timetable for Upton’s return, however it is not expected that he will miss any more than a few weeks.

“The thing is they want to get it under control and make sure it’s perfectly fine and then I can get out there and play,” Upton said. “Would I love to be out there? Yeah. But if this is going to help me over the long term, this is what we’ve got to do.”

The Rays will also be without outfielder Sam Fuld to start the season. Fuld is suffering from a wrist injury and may need surgery.

It is expected that Elliot Johnson, a utility player, will take over one of the positions.

Last season, Upton hit .243 with 23 home runs and 81 RBIs.

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Categories: Baseball