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Rays’ Davis, Niemann will have shoulders examined

Uh oh. Word comes from the Tampa Tribune’s Tony Fabrizio that the Rays have sent both Wade Davis and Jeff Niemann back to St. Petersburg to be examined Monday by team orthopedist Dr. Koco Eaton.

“Both of them have been experiencing the same kind of posterior shoulder soreness,” manager Joe Maddon told the Tribune. “Again we don’t think either rone is a long term situation of any kind but we want to make sure before we put them out there.”

Niemann had a start skipped this weekend, so it’s no surprise, but Davis’ issues are new. The rookie topped out at 158.2 innings last season for Triple-A Durham and has already reached 121.1 total frames this year in the big leagues. Perhaps he’s hitting a wall.

The Rays held Jeremy Hellickson back from his scheduled Sunday start at Triple-A and could call him up next week if either Davis or Niemann is forced to the disabled list. Hellickson threw seven innings of two-run ball in his major league debut against the Twins last week and would be a fine fill-in. But it’s not exactly an ideal time for a Wild Card-leading team to begin losing starters.