The Tampa Bay Rays are one step closer toward setting the Opening Day roster, reducing the number of players in big league camp on Sunday by nine. Pitchers Ryne Stanek and Anthony Banda were optioned to the minors, while seven others were reassigned to the minor leagues: pitchers Kyle Bird, Ian Gibaut, Cody Hall, Adam Kolarek and Colton Murray, as well as catchers Xorge Carrillo and Johnny Monell.
All told, the Rays Spring Training roster now sits at 36, including Jose De Leon, who is out for the season due to Tommy John surgery. The asterisk denotes non-rostered players.
Jose De Leon
The Rays are expected to keep six long relievers that can go once through the order, so it seems likely that Andriese, Chirinos, Jennings, Kittredge, Pruitt and Yarbrough will compete for those spots.
Rays skipper Kevin Cash told Neil Solondz (Rays Radio) that Banda, one of the nine cut from the roster on Sunday, will be stretched out to start with Triple-A Durham, although that does not preclude him from being called up to the Major League level if he is needed to fulfill a multi-inning role later on. You can hear all of Cash’s comments via the SoundCloud player below.
The New What Next
Tampa Bay will play the first of two back-to-back spring night games tonight.
Southpaw Blake Snell will get the start, pitching opposite of David Hale. Matt Andriese and Alex Colome are also slated to see some mound time for Tampa Bay. Snell has been excellent thus far, allowing just two runs over 11-1/3 innings, while fanning 18 and walking just two.
Rays 3/19/18 Starting Lineup
— Per Solondz, Dan Jennings and Sergio Romo each pitched in a minor league game today, throwing one scoreless inning apiece. Romo struck out two. Jennings was throwing the second of back-to-back outings, doing so yesterday in an MLB game.
— Brad Miller will slot in at first tonight, after an extended break from action due to a broken pinky toe. He saw playing time this past weekend, and hit a pair of doubles in his return to action on Saturday.
— Miss our reporting on the latest stadium development? We got you covered.