CHRIS URSO | Times
Drew Smyly, who gave up a pair of two-run homers to the Marlins in his last start, will be on the mound for the Rays.
UPDATE, 6:51: The issue with Pearce is tendinitis, something he has been getting daily treatment for and expects to be able to play through all season. ... Cash said improving the defense is vital, and that it is on the players as well as the coaches and him to keep making it a focus. .. 2B Logan Forsythe (fractured left shoulder) took swings off tee again today at Trop, also took ground balls and turned double plays. He is eyeing a mid-June return. ... RHPs Alex Cobb and Chase Whitley (TJ surgery) threw 35-pitch bullpens today at Trop, mixed in breaking balls for the first time.
UPDATE, 4:49: Pearce is indeed in the Rays lineup, back at 2B. ... The Royals have won 13 of the last 14 against the Rays in KC, outscoring them 99-41. ... Full Story
Here is the Rays lineup:
DEVELOPING: After losing Monday for the eighth time in 10 games, the Rays will try again against the Royals tonight at 8:15. …
UPDATE, 6:36: Cash said he would like to find a soft landing spot to get Boxberger involved but he will move back onto the closer's role, meaning Alex Colome, 12 for 12 in saves, will go back to 7th or 8th inning work, and make the bullpen better overall. Colome said he has no issues with the decision, as he fully expected Boxberger to reclaim his job when healthy. Boxberger, for his part, said he is ready to go and willing to help in any role. ... Motter is at SS tonight to keep him involved, Cash said, though it's been obvious Miller's defense has been shaky recently. ... Cash said RHP Ryan Webb, put on the DL Sunday with a pec strain, is not expected to be out long. ... 2B Logan Forsythe hit off a tee for the first time today at the Trop as he eyes a mid-June return from his fractured left shoulder. ... LHP Jonny Venters continues to impress in instructional league play, hitting 93 mph today. .. The Rays are wearing camo style caps and jerseys as part of MLB's Memorial Day tribute.
DEVELOPING: After Sunday's crushing defeat, the Rays open a 10-game road trip tonight in Kansas City when they take on the Royals at 8:15. …Full Story
The Rays finish their five-game homestand today against the Yankees with a chance to leap over the Yankees into fourth place in the AL East with a win.
Jake Odorizzi will try to extend his personal winning streak to three games.
The Rays will announce after the game that closer Brad Boxberger will be activated from the DL for Monday’s game in Kansas City. Boxberger said this morning that he feels 100 percent and is confident he is able to get out big league hitters.
The Rays enter today tied with the Mets for the most home runs in the majors with 70. Their 43 home runs this month are a club record for the month of May and one shy of the club record for any month. They hit 44 in September of 2012.
Here are the lineups:
Odorizzi RHPFull Story
Closer Brad Boxberger is expected to return from Montgomery this afternoon to see the training staff for his day-after pitching evaluation.
Boxberger, who has been out since spring training after undergoing adductor surgery, pitched two-thirds of an inning Friday for the Biscuits. That was by design, manager Kevin Cash said.
If Boxberger checks out well he will likely rejoin the team Monday in Kansas City.
Cash said he won't throw Boxberger back into the closer role. Instead, he will ease him into the ninth inning by having pitch in the seventh and eighth. This is a luxury afforded the Rays by the way Alex Colome has performed as the closer — 12-for-12 in save opportunities.
As for today, the Rays will try to snap a three-game losing streak when Matt Moore makes his 10th start of the season, facing the Yankees in a 4:10 p.m. start. Moore will try to follow the lead provided by Chris Archer, who turned in his best outing of the season Friday, pitching eighth innings and allowed just one earned run in the Rays 4-1 loss to the Yankees.
Moore is 0-1 in four starts this month. He has a 8.53 ERA and opposing hitters are batting .376 in those starts. …Full Story
WILL VRAGOVIC | Times
Chris Archer will start for the Rays.
UPDATE, 5:55: Kevin Kiermaier (left hand fracture)began core exercises Friday. He said he can't do much in the way of exercises on his left hand until the incision from his surgery heals, which should be another week.Full Story
Basically, Kiermaier said he can't sweat otherwise he risks infection.
As for tonight, the Rays begin a three-game, holiday weekend series against the Yankees.
Chris Archer returns to the mound, looking to rebound from his previous start - a three-inning, six-run outing in Detroit that led to his fifth loss of the season.
Masahiro Tanaka, who has received seven no-decisions in his nine outings, starts for the Yankees.
Steven Souza Jr., is not in the lineup. Manager Kevin Cash said it is nothing more than a day off for Souza. Steve Pearce is servings as the DH, which is an attempt to keep his bat in the lineup while giving him a night off his feet.
Hank Conger will catch Archer. In four starts covering 19.2 innings, Archer has a 7.32 ERA when pitching to Conger.
Here are the lineups:
Tanaka RHP (2-0, 3.24)
DEVELOPING: Rays lineups for tonight's game with Yankees ... …
Rays mascot Raymond was targeted Thursday by Marlins pitcher Jose Fernandez. "He was all over my business,'' Fernandez said. "I'm trying to concentrate. It was a little change-up that came out of my hand. Just part of the game, man. This is a game and I love to have fun.''
Marlins RHP Jose Fernandez has no issues taking aim at any target - and that includes the Rays furry blue mascot Raymond.
Fernandez, a product of Tampa's Alonso High, plunked Raymond with a pitch when he ventured too close to the visitors bullpen during warmups for Thursday's game.
"He was all over my business,'' Fernandez said. "I'm trying to concentrate. It was a little change-up that came out of my hand. Just part of the game, man. This is a game and I love to have fun.''
Times sports columnist Martin Fennelly saw the incident and said Fernandez was smiling when asked about it after the Marlins 9-1 victory that was his first win in three tries at the Trop, claiming the ball was a little slippery at the moment.
"He was too close. I'd never even seen that,'' Fernandez said. "You're trying to warm up, this is a big game. Every game for us, the way we've been playing, is important. We're so close to the fight. I'm like, ‘Guy, I think you need to move.'"
Marlins catcher Jeff Mathis also had an issue with Raymond, who typically wanders among the visiting players as they warm up in the leftfield area. …Full Story
WILL VRAGOVIC | Times
Drew Smyly will be on the mound for the Rays.
UPDATE, 11:59: 2B Logan Forsythe said he is feeling better, and is targeting the next homestand, June 10-19, for his return. He took ground balls on Wednesday, his first baseball activity since having his left shoulder franctured by a Felix Hernandez pitch on May 9. … RHP Ryan Garton said he heard from close to 100 friends and relatives after his unexpected promotion to the majors on Wednesday. … With Tim Beckham sent down, the Rays have Pearce at 2B and Motter at 3b.
UPDATE, 11:22: The Rays are giving Evan Longoria a DH day, with Taylor Motter starting at 3B.
And the Marlins lineup, again without Yelich and Stanton:
DEVELOPING: After Wednesday's frustrating loss, the Rays are back on the field early again today, with a 1:10 finale to the home and home Citrus Series.
While LHP Drew Smyly will be on the mound for the Rays, there spotlight will be on Marlins starter Jose Fernandez, the Cuban-born product of Tampa's Alonso High who is off to a great start.
Lineups when available.Full Story
WILL VRAGOVIC | Times
This will be the fourth start for Matt Andriese, who made his season debut on Mother’s Day. He leads the rotation in wins (3) and ERA (2.11).
Needing help for an overworked bullpen, the Rays selected RHP Ryan Garton from Triple A Durham and added him to the roster this afternoon. To make room, they optioned INF Tim Beckham to Durham.
Garton, 26, a Mitchell High product, was 1-0 with a 2.38 in 22.2 IP (14 appearances) with the Bulls. He has pitched as many as four innings in one game this season, meaning he is capable of giving the Rays bullpen some length. This could be important tonight since RHP Erasmo Ramirez is still unavailable after throwing 54 pitches in Monday’s loss.
Garton is the second reliever to join the team this week. RHP Tyler Sturdevant was recalled Monday and made his big league debut in Tuesday’s win.
Beckham was the odd man out now that UTL Taylor Motter is on the club. Motter, who starts tonight at shortstop against the Marlins, is a more versatile player.
Manager Kevin Cash said Beckham needs to get consistent at-bats, something he couldn’t do as the 25th man on the team. Cash said his status will be looked at again in a couple of weeks. Still, being sent down at this point of his career is not a good sign for Beckham, who was the first overall pick in the 2008 draft. …Full Story
WILL VRAGOVIC | Times
Ryan Garton pitches for the Rays during an exhibition in March against the Pirates in Bradenton.
UPDATE. 3:31: To make room for Garton the Rays made a surprising move, sending INF Tim Beckham to Triple-A Durham. To make room on the 40-man roster for Garton, the Rays DFA'd OF Jake Goebbert.
DEVELOPING: The Rays are calling up RHP Ryan Garton to add an arm to the bullpen, the Tampa Bay Times has learned.
Garton, 26, is a local product, having been born in Clearwater and attending New Port Richey's Mitchell High.
It is not clear yet what move the Rays are making to create room for Garton, who has to be added to the 25- and 40-man rosters.
Garton, a 34th-round pick in the 2012 draft, has been pitching well in his first season at the Triple-A level, going 1-0, 2.38 with two saves in 14 apperances, logging 29 strikeouts in 22 2/3 innings.
Garton is the second new arm added to the bullpen in the the last three days, as RHP Tyler Sturdevant was summoned Monday and made his MLB debut in Tuesday's win over the Marlins.
WILL VRAGOVIC | Times
Jake Odorizzi will be on the mound for the Rays, who have lost three straight.
UPDATE, 11:29: RHP Erasmo Ramirez said he felt the "normal soreness" this morning after throwing 54 pitches in 2-plus innings on Monday and expects to be available again on Thursday. But he also said he made a mistake when the Rays asked him about going back out to start a third inning after throwing 45 pitches and needs to "be smarter" to protect himself from injury. ... RHP Brad Boxberger will make at least a fifth rehab outing, on Wednesday for Double-A Montgomery. ...
Here is the Marlins lineup:
UPDATE, 11:18: The Rays have Brandon Guyer in CF today, with slumping Corey Dickerson in LF.
DEVELOPING: After a long, late and frustrating loss to the Marlins last night, the Rays are back at it early this morning, prepping for a 12:10 matinee.
RHP Jake Odorizzi will be on the mound for the Rays, who have lost three straight. RHP Tom Koehler is starting for the Marlins. …Full Story
Kevin Kiermaier is helped off the field after getting injured diving for a single by the Detroit Tigers' James McCann during the fifth inning of a baseball game, Saturday in Detroit. [AP photo]
Rays CF Kevin Kiermaier will have surgery on Tuesday on his broken left hand and is expected to miss 8-10 weeks.
Kiermaier broke two metacarpal bones in his left hand attempting a diving catch on Saturday.
A re-evaluation on Monday in St. Petersburg by specialist Dr. Doug Carlan showed mild displacement, making surgery more necessary.
WILL VRAGOVIC | Times
Matt Moore, who has been struggling in his last five starts, will be on the mound for the Rays.
UPDATE, 6:25: Cash said again they will use a mix and match apporach in replacing Kiermaier, with Mahtook and Jennings primarily, but also Guyer. ... Even though Marlins slugger Giancarlo Stanton is struggling, 5-for-his-last-52, Cash said they consider him very dangerous. .. RHP Brad Boxberger was sharp in his last rehab outing on Sunday but will make at least one more before rejoining Rays. ... RHP Tyler Sturdevant was emotional in talking about making it to the majors for the first time after eight seasons in the minors. Cash said they are happy for him and excited to see what he can do.
DEVELOPING: After their rough weekend in Detroit, where they lost two games and CF Kevin Kiermaier to a broken left hand, the Rays are in Miami tonight to open a two-game series with the Marlins here, then head home to play them two more at the Trop.
Mikie Mahtook, called up on Sunday to take Kiermaier's place on the roster, will get his first chance to replace him in the field, starting tonight in CF. Taylor Motter, who grew up Palm Beach Gardens, will start at shortstop tonight. …Full Story
UPDATE, 7:10: Here is some of what Geltz had to say:
"I'm not going to lose any faith It's a demotion, but it's for a cause. There's a reason for it. It's just performance. I haven't been playing good. I haven't been helping the team.''
Cash said it would be good for Geltz to go back to Triple-A, have some success and feel good about himself again.
"We know he's a pitcher who can help us out simply because of last year,'' he said/
UPDATE, 5:24: Sturdevant got the call. He is 30, was an Indians draft pick, served a 50-game PED suspension last year, and pitched with Triple-A Columbus. He was at Durham this year, going 1-0, 1.56 with 2 saves and 21 SO in 14 games.
DEVELOPING: The Rays optioned struggling reliever RHP Steve Geltz to Triple-A Durham after Sunday's game.
Geltz gave up a two-run homer in the eighth inning, the seventh he has allowed in 17 games this season, and fifth in the last two weeks.
No corresponding move was announced. With RHP Andrew Bellatti on the DL and RHP Danny Farquhar ineligible to be recalled, the Rays may have to look at one of their non-roster relievers, such as Dylan Floro, Ryan Garton or Tyler Sturdevant.
UPDATE, 12:05: Jennings is in there today, but Cash said they will mix and match, with Mahtook also getting ample opportunity, and Guyer potentially as well. Also a factor the Rays play the next 18 days in a row. ... Kiermaier headed home for a Monday appointment with Dr. Doug Carlan, which will lead to a decision on suergery and a better timetable, though he seems likely to miss at least two months.
J Martinez RF,
V Martinez DH,
UPDATE, 8:01: Mikie Mahtook was just removed from the Triple-A game so it would seem that means he is headed to Detroit to join Rays as Kiermaier's replacement.Full Story
UPDATE, 7:43: The Rays said any decision on surgery and a timetable for Kiermaier's return will come after his Monday doctor visit. Kiermaier Kiermaier emotional in talking about the injury and more so not being able to play for "quite a while" and help the team.
Manager Kevin Cash said they Rays would find a way to get through his absence, but several players acknowledged the obvious. "It's a big loss,'' Evan Longoria said.
UPDATE, 6:22: The Rays say it is two broken metacarpal bones in Kiermaier's left hand, not the wrist. He will fly home on Sunday and be seen Monday by team hand specialist Dr. Doug Carlan in St. Petersburg, OF Mikie Mahtook would seem like the obvious call-up from Triple-A to take Kiermaier's place.
DEVELOPING: Rays CF Kevin Kiermaier left Saturday's game with a left wrist injury that appeared severe.
Kiermaier was racing in to try to make a diving catch on a sinking line drive, and his left wrist bent back as he hit the ground.
Kiermaier immediately grabbed his wrist and writhed in paid, then got up and started running off the field even before the Rays assistant athletic trainer Paul Harker could get to him.
Kiermaier, who won Gold and Platinum gloves last season for his defensive prowess, is one of the key players in the Rays lineup based on his speed and athleticism.
Desmond Jennings replaced Kiermaier in centerfield. …