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05/15/08 3:58 PM ET

Bartlett a last-second scratch in finale

Shortstop tending to situation with family; Zobrist gets first start

ST. PETERSBURG -- Jason Bartlett was a last-minute scratch from Thursday's game vs. the Yankees as the shortstop left Tropicana Field around 3 p.m. ET to tend to a family matter.

The infielder had started in 38 of the Rays' first 40 games, and in addition to being a defensive cornerstone, was batting .237 with eight RBIs.

In his place, the Rays penciled in utilityman Ben Zobrist, who was activated from the 15-day disabled list on Tuesday. Zobrist opened the season on the DL after fracturing his left thumb in Spring Training, and is coming off a four-game rehab stint with Class A Vero Beach last week.

The Rays' Opening Day shortstop in 2007, Zobrist made his first appearance with the Major League squad this year, after going 4-for-14 with two RBIs in Vero Beach.

It is unknown whether Bartlett will travel with the team tonight to St. Louis, in preparation for a six-game road trip starting Friday.

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