The Rays are back on the right side of things, beating the Orioles by a score of 4-1. Alex Cobb had an overpowering outing, allowing only one hit in three innings of work while striking out five and allowing no walks. Of the 36 pitches Cobb threw, 28 went for strikes. The right hander showed marked improvement over his first outing of the spring against the Red Sox when he allowed two runs on four hits in two innings of work.
“Felt good,” said Alex Cobb of his outing. “Did my bullpen, worked on a few things from my last outing. … Carried it out to the game and I felt pretty sharp.”
Fernando Rodney was credited with the win following one scoreless inning, facing the minimum of hitters and striking out one. Rodney is projected to leave camp early next week as he will make his way to the WBC where he’ll play for the Dominican Republic. This happened to be Jose Molina and Ben Zobrist’s last game with the Rays prior to the WBC.
Offensively speaking, the long-ball accounted for Tampa Bay’s four runs. Yunel Escobar hit his first home run of the spring, a two-run opposite field blast off of Brian Matusz. Ryan Roberts followed that up by hitting his second Grapefruit League tater, giving the Rays a 3-0 lead in the fourth. Sean Rodriguez got his first hit of the spring off of a fifth inning opposite field blast to put the Rays up 4-0.
The New What Next: David Price is slated to start against the Twins Sunday at Charlotte Sports Park. Price will likely work three innings in his second outing of the spring. Also scheduled to pitch behind Pricey are Jamey Wright, Joel Peralta, Jake McGee, J.D. Martin and Felipe Rivero.
Rays 3/3/13 Starting Lineup:
The Rays made their first round of cuts Saturday, reassigning four players to minor-league camp: Nevarez, Paduch, Patterson, Schenk.
Marc Topkin wrote a really great piece on Chris Archer’s trek for self discovery.
Finally, head of the players union, Michael Weiner, made his way down to Port Charlotte Saturday and shared his views on the Rays organization, including his views on the stadium saga. Weiner had no sense of how the stadium saga would be resolved, though he said elimination of the franchise through contraction wasn’t a viable option — “I don’t think that’s the solution.” He also hasn’t heard any talk about potential relocation out of the Tampa Bay area. He also thinks that a new stadium on the other side of downtown Tampa (presumably near the fairgrounds) may be the best location for a new facility, as a means to attract fans from Orlando. However a recent Quinnipiac poll finds that the majority of central Florida baseball fans favor the Yankees, potentially contradicting Weiner’s idea on a stadium location. Perhaps those that find the Rays already in Tampa should listen to the fans who, time and again, have said they do not want the Rays in downtown Tampa, or in the fairgrounds region?