March 2012

Seen on Field 5

The Rays worked out on Field 5 at Charlotte Sports Park prior to Saturday’s game against the Red Sox.  Aside from the batting practice there were a couple of interesting stories going on.

First was Reid Brignac hosting T.J. Andrews.  Andrews, 11, met Brignac at Tampa General Hospital when Andrews was recovering from an explosion that cost him four fingers from his dominant left hand. Since that first meeting Andrews and Brignac have remained friends.  Andrews and his mother, Toka, drove to Port Charlotte from Climax, Ga. on Friday to spend the weekend with Brignac and the Rays. Sunday will be the one-year anniversary of Andrews’ accident.

Also seen on Field 5 was Joe Maddon standing at the batting cage wearing cutoff baseball pants. The workout was to have been in shorts, but the Rays manager opted for his baseball pants. James Shields remedied the situation by cutting off the skipper’s pants.

Here are photos of, first, Toka, T.J. and Brignac followed by one of Maddon donning his cutoffs.

Saturday’s Lineup for Rays vs. Red Sox

Here’s the Rays’ lineup for today’s game against the Red Sox:

 

Jennings, CF

Scott, DH

Longoria, 3B

Zobrist, RF

Pena, 1B

Joyce, LF

Keppinger, 2B

Lobaton, C

Rodriguez, SS

Davis, RHP

–Bill Chastain

Rodney OK

The Rays experienced a scary moment in the ninth inning when Fernando Rodney took a shot off his right forearm and had to leave the game.

Pittsburgh’s Alex Presley lined a single back at Rodney and the ball ricocheted off Rodney’s forearm. Rodney left the game to be examined by the Rays trainers, who reported that Rodney had a right forearm contusion and is OK.

–Bill Chastain

Rotation Announced

The Rays rotation to start the season, in order, will be:

Shields, Price, Hellickson, Moore and Niemann.

Just announced.

–Bill Chastain

Rays Lineup for Wednesday Night’s Tilt with the Pirates

Here’s the Rays’ lineup for Wednesday night’s Rays-Pirates contest at Charlotte Sports Park:

Zobrist, 2B

Pena, 1B

Longoria, 3B

Joyce, RF

Scott, DH

Lobaton, C

Rodriguez, SS

Johnson, CF

Gimenez, LF

Price, LHP

–Bill Chastain

Rays Lineup vs. Red Sox on Tuesday

Here’s who the Rays will start against the Red Sox Tuesday in Fort Myers:

Jennings, DH

Joyce, RF

Zobrist, 2B

Pena, 1B

Keppinger, 3B

Salazar, CF

Rodriguez, SS

Lobaton, C

Rhymes, LF

Rodney, RHP

–Bill Chastain

Rays Recap for Monday

Jeff Niemann didn’t do anything to hurt his chances for claiming the last spot in the rotation with his performance Monday against the Twins.

The 6-foot-9 right-hander allowed two runs on six hits, three walks and he struck out five in five innings. Niemann threw 93 pitches of which 57 were strikes.  Rays manager Joe Maddon said Niemann appeared to have a lot left in the tank when he finished his outing, which he noted was a good thing.

Maddon plans to name the fifth starter on Tuesday and Niemann is starting to appear like he has the inside track for the job over Wade Davis.  Matt Moore already appears secure with a spot in the rotation.

Meanwhile, B.J. Upton took some swings and did some running around in the outfield on Monday in Port Charlotte. He continues to progress from his lower back problem. But there was no word about Sam Fuld, who was scheduled to have an MRI on his right wrist on Monday.

–Bill Chastain

Rays Lineup for Monday vs. the Twins

Here’s the Rays’ lineup for Monday’s game against the Twins in Fort Myers:

Zobrist, RF

Scott, DH

Longoria, 3B

Pena, 1B

Keppinger, 2B

Molina, C

Johnson, SS

Rhymes, Will

Feliciano, CF

Niemann, RHP

–Bill Chastain

Hellickson Gets His Work In

Jeremy Hellickson worked on Monday while the rest of the team took the day off.

The Rays right-hander pitched for a Single-A Rays team against the Red Sox, allowing three runs on five hits while striking out five and walking one in 4 1/3 innings. The reigning American League Rookie of the Year threw 76 pitches of which 55 were strikes.

Basically, Hellickson was just getting in his work as he advances toward his first start of the 2012 regular season.  And everything looked fine on Monday.

–Bill Chastain

Sunday’s Lineup for the Rays

Here’s who the Rays will start Sunday against the Red Sox at Charlotte Sports Park:

Jennings, LF

Scott, DH

Zobrist, 2B

Longoria, 3B

Pena, 1B

Keppinger, SS

Joyce, RF

Molina, C

Fuld, CF

Moore, LHP

–Bill Chastain

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