From the official transactions feed of Major League Baseball …
Cabrera suffered the injury Saturday while scoring on a Rene Rivera RBI single. It looked like a bad strain, but he should be able to return before the end of the month. Cabrera has hit just .223/.275/.352 in 325 plate appearances this season for the Rays, but his defensive ratings have been fantastic so far.
Tampa Bay figures to use a combination of Tim Beckham and Jake Elmore in Cabrera’s absence.
Rays shortstop Asdrubal Cabrera exited Saturday’s game against the Astros after two innings due to a hamstring injury, Matt Baker of the Tampa Bay Times reports. He had doubled in the bottom half of the second and came around to score on a Rene Rivera single. He was hobbling on his way home, and eventually collapsed on the on-deck circle in front of the dugout.
The Rays made a series of changes to account for Cabrera’s injury. Kevin Kiermaier entered to play center field, Jake Elmore switched from left field to shortstop, Joey Butler moved from right field to left field, and Brandon Guyer moved from center field to right field.
After the game, manager Kevin Cash said he’s hearing good things about Cabrera’s injury, via Roger Mooney of The Tampa Tribune. Cabrera also said his hamstring is feeling better. So it may not be that serious, but they’ll know more when he undergoes further testing.
Cabrera, 29, is batting .223/.275/.352 with five home runs and 22 RBI on the season.
Nick Franklin was expected to have at least a share of the starting second base job for the Rays to begin the season, but that’s in jeopardy now that he has suffered a strained left oblique.
Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times notes that Franklin tweaked his oblique on his last swing of batting practice this morning. Rays manager Kevin Cash said that they are “not too optimistic” that he’ll be ready for Opening Day, which makes sense given that these type of injuries can sideline players for a few weeks.
The Rays have already named Asdrubal Cabrera as their starting shortstop, so assuming Franklin begins the season on the disabled list, Logan Forsythe figures to get most of the playing time at second base. Alexi Casilla, Tim Beckham, and Jake Elmore could also be in the mix.
Jake Elmore, who was dropped from the 40-man roster by the Pirates last week, has signed a minor-league deal with the Rays that includes an invitation to spring training.
Elmore has hit just .221 with a .579 OPS in 87 games as a big leaguer for three different teams, but he’s a career .313 hitter with a .407 on-base percentage in the minors and has experience all over the field defensively.
He’ll try to grab a bench job in Tampa Bay, but may be headed back to Triple-A at age 28.