Asdrubal (knee) expects to return soon

Asdrubal (knee) expects to return soon

ST. PETERSBURG -- The Rays got some good news on Wednesday regarding Asdrubal Cabrera, who had to leave Tuesday night's game with a left knee strain. The shortstop had an MRI on the knee and everything came up negative.

"I hope to be back soon," Cabrera said.

Cabrera is hitting .262 with 12 home runs and 48 RBIs, and he has 24 RBIs since the beginning of August. When asked if he thought he might shut it down for the season, Cabrera replied: "I don't think so."

Cabrera injured his knee while swinging at a pitch in the bottom of the fourth inning on Tuesday night.

"I feel a pop in my knee," said Cabrera.

In Cabrera's absence, Nick Franklin, who took over at shortstop and hit a game-winning home run on Tuesday, will be used at shortstop, as will Tim Beckham.

Rays manager Kevin Cash told reporters, "We want him on the field. ... We want him to finish strong."

Worth noting

Jake McGee (left knee) and Xavier Cedeno (left side tightness) will throw in a simulated game on Thursday.

• The Rays will hold a news conference on Friday to announce that Carlos Pena has been signed and that the 14-year veteran will immediately announce his retirement from Major League Baseball. He will also throw out a ceremonial first pitch prior to the game against the Orioles.

• On Wednesday, Baseball America named Triple-A Durham left-hander Blake Snell its Minor League Player of the Year. He was chosen for the same honor last week by USA Today. Other Rays to earn the honor from Baseball America include: Rocco Baldelli (2002), Delmon Young (2005) and Jeremy Hellickson (2010).

Bill Chastain is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.