Longoria returns to action after forearm issue

Longoria returns to action after forearm issue

ST. PETERSBURG -- Rays third baseman Evan Longoria was back in the lineup Friday after missing Tampa Bay's loss to Seattle on Thursday with left forearm tightness.

Signs of the injury were evident Wednesday, when Taylor Motter pinch-hit for Longoria in the final inning of a 13-inning victory over the Mariners at Tropicana Field. However, before the Rays' 5-1 loss to the Giants on Friday, Longoria said he felt well enough to play.

"I feel OK swinging," Longoria said before going 0-for-4 in the series opener at Tropicana Field. "There were just certain things that bother it. I can do pretty much everything I need to."

Longoria was slotted in the third spot in the lineup, batting behind Logan Forsythe and Brad Miller. Manager Kevin Cash was eager to see Longoria return.

"He wants to be in there all the time," Cash said. "When he says he needs a day, he probably needs more than that. He walked in, we texted back and forth this morning and said he was good to go. So we're excited to have him back in."

Longoria has been an offensive spark plug for the Rays of late. Entering Friday, he was batting .278 with 16 home runs and 40 RBIs this season. Before missing Thursday's game, he had at least one hit in 15 of his past 16 contests.

"I think it's just something that, hopefully, we can get past and I won't need extended rest," Longoria said.

• The Rays recalled right-handed reliever Steve Geltz from Triple-A Durham on Friday and optioned right-handed reliever Ryan Garton to Durham. Geltz was optioned to Durham on May 23 and went 0-1 with a 3.52 ERA in eight appearances there before his promotion.

"It's more or less just going out and pitching, just going out there and having good outings and being able to commit to something and believe in it and execute it," said Geltz, who struck out two in a 1-2-3 ninth inning Frday. "It kind of rebuilds that foundation of what I was used to."

• The Rays signed third baseman Josh Lowe, who was selected as the No. 13 overall pick in this year's Draft. He'll report to the Rookie-level Gulf Coast League Rays.

"I'm real excited to get this process on the road," Lowe said.

Andrew Astleford is a contributor to MLB.com based in St. Petersburg. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.