Josh Willingham's back is better and the left fielder is back in the Marlins lineup tonight as the Citrus Series resumes against the Rays. Hanley Ramirez took the lead back from Miguel Tejada to start at SS for the NL in the All-Star Game on July 15 in Yankee Stadium....More on all that in a bit, but first here are the lineups.
RAYS- Iwamura-2b, Aybar-1b, Crawford-LF, Upton-CF, Longoria-3b, Navarro-C, Gomes-RF, Bartlett-SS, Sonnanstine-P.
MARLINS- Ramirez-SS, Hermida-RF, Cantu-3b, Willingham-LF, Uggla-2b, Jacobs-1b, Ross-CF, Hoover-C, Olsen-P.
BACK IN LEFT
Although he is not 100 percent healthy yet, Willingham said he's feels good enough to play.
"It doesn't hurt anymore so I don't think about it," said Willingham, of the herniated disk in his back. "There are good days and bad days, but it's manageable now."
Willingham is hitting .341 with 6 HR and 16 RBI. He missed 50 games as the Marlins went 25-25 without him.
Manager Fredi Gonzalez said he plans on playing Willingham every day.
"It's one of those things that when it acts up, it's going to act up," Gonzalez said. "The only time the Hammer is going to come out is if we pinch-run for him. If he comes out there's something wrong with him."
HANLEY PASSES MIGGY; UGGLA STILL CHASING CHASE
With 8 days left before voting closes for the 79th All Star Game, Hanley Ramirez passed Astros SS Miguel Tejada for the starting shortstop position on the National League team on Tuesday.
HR leads Tejada by 70,664 votes. Voting ends July 2 on mlb.com
Dan Uggla could possibly be the NL MVP this season, but if he's going to win the All-Star Game MVP, Uggla is going to have to make the team as a reserve.
Uggla, who leads the major leagues with 23 HR, is 4th among NL second basemen and trails the Phillies' Chase Utley by more than 1,500 votes.