The Rays dropped their fourth consecutive Grapefruit League game Saturday in a 6-4 loss to the Minnesota Twins. Tampa Bay is now 14-13 on the spring with only seven games left to play until opening day.
David Price got the start Saturday and put together a solid performance early on, though things started to slip away in the fourth inning. After getting two quick outs, Price gave up a pair of singles and a pair of walks which resulting in two runs. Price ultimately allowed three runs (two earned) on nine hits and two walks, while striking out seven in five innings innings of work.
Hoping to pitch into the sixth inning, Price was pulled after 89 pitches in the fifth, saying,
“I feel fine. I feel good out there, and my stuff is good and good in the bullpen,” Price said. “I really feel like last year it took me to my first start. That’s when everything clicked for me. I’m still kind of waiting for that now… This last week I feel like I’ve hit a wall in spring training,” he said. “I get out there on the mound, I just feel like blah.”
Price was encouraged to have gotten out of some jams, but was frustrated he wasn’t more efficient. With one more spring outing to go, Price is confident he’ll be ready by opening day.
The Rays four runs came in the third and fourth innings thanks to Jose Lobaton, James Loney, and Yunel Escobar who drove in a run a piece. Evan Longoria also crossed the plate thanks to a Twins error. Lobaton had a monster day in the batters box, going 3-3 with a solo shot in the bottom of the third. He however was not rewarded with ice cream this time around.
A bit of a scare came in the eighth inning when reliever Kyle Farnsworth was pulled from the game as a precaution after only 1/3 of an inning. Farnsworth bruised his right middle finger while reaching for grounder with his pitching hand. Rays Skipper Joe Maddon says he will be fine.
The New What Next:
Jeremy Hellickson will get the start Sunday afternoon against the Yankees in Tampa. Helly is 2-0 with a 4.97 ERA in Grapefruit League action thus far, and will be making his fifth appearance of the spring. Also slated to pitch are Kirby Yates and Joel Peralta. We’ll post the Rays starting lineup when it becomes available.
Rays 3/24/13 Starting Lineup:
- Tampa Bay made another round of cuts Saturday, reassigning Dane De La Rosa, Kirby Yates, Leslie Anderson, Cole Figueroa, and Rich Thompson to minor league camp. Recent acquisition Jack Cust was released from his contract. The roster is down to 32 players.
- Marc Topkin writes that the Rays opening day roster may look like this: Pitchers (12): Alex Cobb, Kyle Farnsworth, Jeremy Hellickson, Roberto Hernandez, Jake McGee, Matt Moore, Jeff Niemann, Joel Peralta. David Price, Cesar Ramos, Fernando Rodney, Jamey Wright-x, Catchers (2): Jose Lobaton, Jose Molina, Infielders (6): Yunel Escobar, Kelly Johnson, James Loney, Evan Longoria, Ryan Roberts, Sean Rodriguez, Outfielders (5): Sam Fuld, Desmond Jennings, Matt Joyce, Luke Scott, Ben Zobrist
- Topkin also writes, “Tuesday is the deadline to either put RHP Jamey Wright on the 25-man roster (where he’d make $1 million) or the disabled list, release him or pay him a $100,000 retention bonus to keep him in the minors (with a June 1 opt-out). Same for RHP Juan Carlos Oviedo, who is recovering from reconstructive elbow surgery and thus is likely headed to the DL, the Rays holding a 2014 option for $2 million plus incentives. … Though the season opener isn’t until April 2, the Rays have to set their 25-man roster March 31.”