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Rays lose setup man Grant Balfour for 4-6 weeks with injury

Jul 31, 2010, 1:23 PM EDT

In news that helps explain the Rays’ acquisition of Chad Qualls this morning, Grant Balfour is expected to miss 4-6 weeks with a strained intercostal/rib muscle.
Balfour was brilliant for the Rays in 2008, struggled for much of last season, and has been dominant again this year with a 2.08 ERA, .218 opponents’ batting average, and 44/13 K/BB ratio in 43.1 innings.
Qualls’ secondary numbers suggest he’s a very good bet to pitch significantly better than his hideous performance in Arizona, but he’s still a big downgrade as a replacement for Balfour.

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