Mar. 14, 2012; Port Charlotte, FL, USA; Tampa Bay Rays center fielder B.J. Upton (2) walks into the dugout in the second inning against the Miami Marlins at Charlotte Sports Park. Mandatory Credit: Andrew Weber-US PRESSWIRE

B.J. Upton Injury: Center Fielder Comes Off DL For Rays Vs. Twins

Joe Maddon has confirmed that B.J. Upton will come off the disabled list for Friday's game against the Minnesota Twins.

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B.J. Upton To Return From DL For Rays On Friday

Tampa Bay Rays center fielder B.J. Upton could make his first appearance of the season on Friday. Joe Maddon confirmed on Thursday that Upton will be brought off the disabled list for Friday's game against the Minnesota Twins. Upton suffered a back injury during spring training and started the season on the DL, but is finally ready to return, per Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times.

The Rays also recently claimed Brandon Allen off waivers from the Oakland Athletics, and are expected to add both Allen and Upton to the roster ahead of Friday's game. If both are activated, two Rays will be sent down to Triple-A to make room.

For more on Upton, head over to Tampa Bay Rays blog DRaysBay. You can find more on the entire world of baseball at Baseball Nation.

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B.J. Upton Injury: Rays Center Fielder To Start Season On DL

The Tampa Bay Rays have been hoping to start the season on a healthy note, but it appears that they're going to lose at least one player to injuries. B.J. Upton has still not recovered fully from his collision in the outfield with Desmond Jennings, and the Rays feel it would be best for him if he started the season on the disabled list.

In the aftermath of the collision, Upton has had ongoing issues with his back. Some days it's looser and he can play with it; other days it's tight and he can't do much. His back has not loosened up as much as the Rays had hoped, so they are retroactively placing him on the DL to start the season. Technically, he could return from the DL after only missing a handful of games, but the Rays have stated that there is no timetable for his return. Whenever his back is better, he will play.

In his place, the Rays are expected to promote rookie Brandon Guyer to fill in on the bench and in the outfield. The Rays do have other internal options as well -- including Jeff Salazar and Will Rhymes -- but Guyer offers the Rays the most upside and would be able to immediately help the team during their difficult opening stretch of games.

For more on the Rays, drop by SB Nation's blog DRaysBay.

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