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03/14/08 3:15 PM ET

Ailing Cannizaro returns to Rays

Infielder received hospital treatment to relieve back pain

ST. PETERSBURG -- Infielder Andy Cannizaro reported back to the Rays on Friday morning after being sidelined several days with back pain.

Cannizaro said he has had previous back problems and wanted to err on the cautious side. Since Cannizaro's stomach doesn't handle anti-inflammatories well, the infielder received outpatient treatment at a hospital, where he was intravenously given anti-inflammatories, Tuesday night.

"Something kind of tightened up on me, so I just wanted to get after this thing as quick as possible instead of trying to play through it," Cannizaro said.

The utility infielder, who is now the top candidate for the Rays' backup shortstop position, said the most important thing was to get back on the field. Cannizaro biked yesterday and hopes to continue to build back to full strength within the next day or so.

Manager Joe Maddon said it was a "definite possibility" to have Cannizaro back for Sunday's game, and Cannizaro echoed the statement, saying he'd play Tuesday at the latest.

Brittany Ghiroli is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.