Results tagged ‘ Shoppach. ’

Pleasing first run

No doubt Joe Maddon is smiling in the Rays’ dugout after watching the manner in which the team scored in the first inning.

Desmond Jennings worked a nice at-bat and walked to lead off the inning. After he stole second, he went to third when Sam Fuld hit the ball to the right side. Kelly Shoppach followed suit by doing the same to drive in Jennings for a 1-0 Rays lead.

The Rays manager will no doubt be pleased.

— Bill Chastain

Praise for Upton and Shoppach

I spoke for the first time with new Rays hitting coach Derek Shelton on Tuesday and he seemed energized about the coming season.

Shelton joined the team in October carrying manager Joe Maddon’s hopes that he can help instill a better approach at the plate for Rays hitters, specifically with runners on third base with less than two outs and when they have two strikes in the count.

B.J. Upton has been working hard with Shelton for most of the off-season and Shelton is optimistic Upton’s hard work will pay rich dividends.  Most Rays fans anticipated Upton exploding last season after his 2008 postseason, but for whatever reason it did not happen. Perhaps that explosion will come a year late.

Shelton, who came to the Rays from the Indians, is familiar with Kelly Shoppach, and noted that the former Indians catcher and now Rays receiver has legitimate power.

–Bill Chastain