Baldelli set to return to the majors

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) — Rocco Baldelli is about to get another chance to play in the majors.

The Tampa Bay Rays are planning to purchase the contract of the outfielder-designated hitter from Triple-A Durham when rosters can be expanded on Wednesday.

Baldelli rejoined the Rays as a special instructor during spring training and was also rehabbing an injured shoulder this year. He missed the 2005 season and most of 2007 and ’08 because of injuries and a medical condition that sapped his energy.

The 28-year-old Baldelli was part of the Rays’ AL championship team in 2008. He played for Boston last season, hitting .253 with seven homers and 23 RBIs in 62 games.

Catcher Dioner Navarro and pitcher Jeremy Hellickson are among the other minor leaguers expected to join the Rays on Wednesday.

After the Rays were beaten 13-5 by the Blue Jays on Tuesday, the team optioned pitcher Andy Sonnanstine to Class-A Hudson Valley, purchased the contract of outfielder Brad Hawpe from Class-A Charlotte and moved left-hander J.P. Howell (left shoulder) from the 15- to the 60-day disabled list.

Received 08/31/10 10:52 pm ET