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Hellickson passes concussion test, will start Saturday

The Sports Xchange
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--RHP Jeremy Hellickson was cleared to start Saturday's game after taking two more concussion-related tests on Friday. "I passed, finally," Hellickson said. "I felt normal the last few days, I felt like I could go, I was just waiting for the OK." Hellickson's status was in question after he was hit on the head by a ball during batting practice on Wednesday in Detroit. The Rays didn't detail what they said was a complicated process for Hellickson to be cleared, whether the final decision was on their end or from Major League Baseball, but that it became official Friday afternoon.

--RHP Josh Lueke was optioned to Triple-A Durham after a second rough outing. Lueke was a late addition to the opening day roster after RHP Kyle Farnsworth was plaed on the disabled list, but allowed nine hits and three walks in his two outings.

--RHP Joel Peralta continues to struggle, manager Joe Maddon saying Peralta is fine physically healthy and throwing with his usual velocity, but is "not comfortable yet." Peralta said he thinks not pitching in winter ball, at the Rays request, is a factor in his early-season struggles.

--SS Reid Brignac said the second-base collision that resulted in a Boston CF Jacoby Ellsbury's right shoulder injury was an "uncontrollable circumstance" that had an "unfortunate" outcome. "As soon as I landed on him, I knew something was not right," Brignac said. "I could hear him and ... it sounded like a very painful thing," Brignac said.

--C Jose Lobaton's status remain unclear as the Rays try to determine the severity of the right shoulder discomfort that had him leave Thursday's game. Lobaton said he felt better on Friday and was "day to day," but the Rays have to know if he can play since C Jose Molina is on a limited playing schedule.

--DH Luke Scott lined out to left field in the seventh inning as a pinch-hitter, his first appearance since leaving Sunday's game because of a mildly strained left hamstring. Scott said he hopes to return to the lineup on Saturday.

BY THE NUMBERS
4 -- Innings in which the Rays saw less than 10 pitches from Sox starter Josh Beckett.

QUOTE TO NOTE
"He slid 9 feet too early. ... I was like, 'What are you doing, Kelly?' ... You can tell he's never stolen a base before." -- SS Reid Brignac, on having ex-teammate Kelly Shoppach, now with the Red Sox, getting the first stolen base of his career.

Copyright (C) 2012 The Sports Xchange. All Rights Reserved.

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