I'm seeing the same. Spare parts reporting that dialer is almost constantly using the sensor, based on the uptime.
Btw, i have tried shutting down messages app but it did not make a difference for me.
Currently i'm comfortably getting a day's use out of the device with some browsing, gps and a couple of calls. it even lives through the night and half next day.
Partial wake lock is minimal for the dialer and android system. cpu usage is similar.
Only the sensor stats are weird.
could this be related to the 'light sensor issue' in froyo?