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Youkilis gets night off after getting hit in ribs

Youkilis gets night off after getting hit in ribs

Youkilis gets night off after getting hit in ribs
MIAMI -- A day after corner infielder Kevin Youkilis was hit under his left ribs on a 92-mph sinker from Marlins reliever Steve Cishek, he was not in manager Bobby Valentine's lineup Wednesday night.

"He's pretty tied up. Again, I didn't see him," said Valentine. [Bench coach Tim Bogar] came in and I just talked to [trainer] Rick [Jameyson]. They say he's pretty rotationally restricted."

There was good news by the end of Boston's 10-2 victory over Miami. Youkilis had improved to the point where he told Valentine he was available for defense late in the game.

He wound up not being needed and no X-rays were taken.

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The Red Sox don't play on Thursday, so perhaps Youkilis will be ready to play in the next game, which is Friday afternoon at Wrigley Field against the Cubs.

This has been a tough season for Youkilis, when you combine injuries, performance (.219 average, four homers and 13 RBIs) and trade rumors.

Has the constant buzz that Youkilis, who has only played for the Red Sox, might get dealt had an impact on him?

"I can't tell," Valentine said. "He's a tough guy, but he'd be inhuman if it didn't affect him. It's his life. Someone on TV or someone writes about it or someone calls him at night, his wife hears about it [and wonders], 'Where are we going to be living?' Again, he's human. It's hard to think it doesn't affect him. Whatever."

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