Posted on: August 7, 2010 7:32 pm
Sounds like it's just a precaution and not -- at this point -- cause for concern, but the Rays scratched right-hander Jeff Niemann from his scheduled start Sunday because of shoulder soreness he's felt since his last start.
"It's just been sore," Niemann told MLB.com. "It's been getting significantly better each day, and it's at a point where I'd rather take the improvements I've made these past few days and not go out and push it and fall back to square one."
Manager Joe Maddon said he's seen a recent decrease in the 27-year-old's command. Niemann might just need a rest -- he's on pace to throw 205 innings in his second big-league season. The Rays can ill-afford to lose Niemann (10-3 with a 3.12 ERA, second-lowest among Rays starters) down the stretch.
Starting in Niemann's place Sunday will be Andy Sonnanstine, who has been on the disabled list with a hamstring strain and was activated Saturday. It will be the first start of the year for Sonnanstine, who has made 30 appearances with a 4.22 ERA and a WHIP of 1.184.
-- David Andriesen
For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter.