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With returning players, Gibson juggling lineups

With returning players, Gibson juggling lineups

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With returning players, Gibson juggling lineups

WASHINGTON -- As injured D-backs players begin to return from the disabled list, Arizona manager Kirk Gibson has some decisions to sort out with regards to playing time.

With 20 games in 20 days leading up to the All-Star break, including this 10-game road trip to cities that are hot and humid, Gibson will have even more reasons to vary his lineups.

"If we get everybody back healthy, I'm going to try and rotate the guys more," Gibson said. "We've got a lot of decisions to make."

Second baseman Aaron Hill was activated Tuesday and placed right back in the starting lineup.

Willie Bloomquist, who had been getting the bulk of playing time at second recently, started at shortstop in place of left-handed-hitting Didi Gregorius, who got the got the day off with southpaw Gio Gonzalez on the mound for the Nationals.

Giving Bloomquist playing time at short against lefties would be one way of getting him into the lineup. In addition, Gibson probably will not play Hill for many games in a row, initially.

"It may go that way on some occasions, but he's fine, I don't have any problem with him on lefties," Gibson said of Gregorius. "He's very good what he does defensively. He's absorbed a lot for a young kid. We've asked him to do a lot and he's held up pretty well. You see him starting to swing the bat much better right now. He's starting to swing it back like he was."

Gregorius was hitting .194 against lefties and .341 against righties heading into play Tuesday.

Things will get even more crowded when third baseman Eric Chavez returns from the disabled list sometime in the next week.

Steve Gilbert is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Inside the D-backs, and follow him on Twitter @SteveGilbertMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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