Tampa Bay Rays third baseman Evan Longoria provided an answer this afternoon to the most popular question in the Tampa area: Is his season over?

"It's the most popular question in my mind, too," Longoria said. "I don't really have an update. I've seen a lot of reports and a lot of people saying my year is done. I don't believe my year is done by any means."

Longoria has been hitting and running arcs around the outfield dirt at a reasonably fast pace, he said, which is proof to him his partially torn left hamstring is well on the mend. He still has trouble fielding grounders to his backhand, which he said is one of the biggest blocks to his return from the injury that has kept him out of action since May 1.

Longoria even asked head athletic trainer Ron Porterfield if he could return as a designated hitter once his leg his healthy enough to allow him to run close to full speed.

"I just want to help," Longoria said.

The Rays begin the second half of the schedule tonight against the visiting Red Sox a half-game out of the American League wild card standings despite going 30-33 without Longoria in the lineup.