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For starters, Rays at Jays, back on the road

Drew Smyly is starting for the Rays against Jays rookie RHP Marcus Stroman.

WILL VRAGOVIC | Times

Drew Smyly is starting for the Rays against Jays rookie RHP Marcus Stroman.

UPDATE, 6:01: Molina has a sore left knee, but is available if needed tonight and is expected to play tomorrow, Maddon said.

UPDATE, 4:22: Curt Casali is behind the plate for a fourth straight game, with Maddon saying veteran Jose Molina has been "banged up.'' Wil Myers is the DH again.

Jennings cf,
Zobrist 2b,
Joyce LF,
Longoria 3b,
Loney 1b,
Myers DH,
Escobar SS,
Casali c,
Kiermaier rf,
Smyly p

And here is the Jays lineup:
Reyes-SS
Cabrera-LF
Bautista-RF
Encarnacion-1B
Valencia-3B
Navarro-C
Rasmus-CF
Reimold-DH
Tolleson-2B
Stroman-P

DEVELOPING: The Rays are back on the road, which has been primarily a good thing, as they open a weekend series tonight with the Blue Jays.

The Jays are ahead of the Rays as both are trying to make up ground in the race for a playoff spot.

LHP Drew Smyly is starting for the Rays against Jays rookie RHP Marcus Stroman.

The Rays are the only team in team in the majors with a winning record on the road, 33-29, but a losing record overall, 62-65.

Lineups when available.

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Kevin Kiermaier on why he keeps diving in the outfield

I’ll have more on this in tomorrow’s paper, but a few quick words on RF Kevin Kiermaier’s diving catch in the eighth inning of today’s 1-0 Rays win over the Tigers.

Kiermaier had misplayed a ball each of the last two nights, including the diving catch he failed to make Tuesday in an extra-innings loss to Detroit. Kiermaier blamed himself for the defeat after the game – instead of an out (or a single), the result was a triple, and Kiermaier still can’t explain how it happened.

Kiermaier has talked several times this year about knowing when to gamble on a play and when to play conservatively.

“I want my instincts to take over,” Kiermaier said. “I’ve just got to trust them and make the right decision at the right time. It’s just part of me maturing out there at the big-league level and knowing there’s a time and place for everything.”

Thursday’s dive was right for a few reasons. Although he initially was iffy on whether he could get it, Kiermaier later decided he could get there in time to make the play. If not, CF Desmond Jennings was running nearby and could keep the hit from becoming another triple. …

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For starters, Rays vs. David Price (and the Tigers)

UPDATE, 11:58: Tigers manager Brad Ausmus says he has been impressed with Price during his three weeks on the team, most notably how much he wants to stay in and finish games.

Ausmus said he understands the emotional ties Price will be dealing with today and expects him to have some butterflies but also is counting on him to "handle it fine.''

UPDATE, 11:48: Manager Joe Maddon expects things to be a little awkward today when former Rays ace David Price starts for Detroit at Tropicana Field.

"He's going to be amped up," Maddon said. "I think (Rays starter Alex Cobb)'s going to be doing the same thing in return. It might even out, kind of."

The Rays loaded their lineup with right-handed hitters against the lefty Price. Maddon also said he started Curt Casali at catcher - and not Jose Molina, who caught  Price's starts with the Rays - because Molina's a little banged up.

"If we can catch a mistake and hit it in the seats, that'd be very beneficial for us," Maddon said.

 

Lineups:

Tigers

Kinsler 2B

Hunter RF

Cabrera DH

V. Martinez 1B

J.D. Martinez LF

Castellanos 3B

Avila C

Suarez SS

Davis CF

Price LHP

Rays

Jennings CF

Zobrist RF

Guyer LF

Longoria 3B

Myers DH

Rodriguez 1B

Escobar SS

Casali C

Forsythe 2B

Cobb RHP …

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Rays players, Price go big for ALS Ice Bucket Challenge

Instagram

Matt Joyce shared this Instagram video to Twitter on Wednesday afternoon in the latest version of athletes, celebrities and ordinary people helping out the charity that supports research and outreach for Lou Gehrig's disease. Here's what the caption said: Dalton Martinez challenged his dad, Dave Martinez, David Price & Chris Archer to do the Ice Bucket Challenge. Yuni, Drew Smyly and Matt Joyce were also challenged, separately. They decided they'd take on the challenge together in support of ALS Association.

 

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For starters, Rays vs. Tigers, seeking to snap a skid

Jake Odorizzi will be on the mound for the Rays.

WILL VRAGOVIC | Times

Jake Odorizzi will be on the mound for the Rays.

UPDATE, 5:17: Ben Zobrist said he wondered at the time if there was something to Max Scherzer hitting him with a pitch in the first inning on Tuesday but after see Scherzer have control issues decided there was not; Maddon said pretty much the same. ... RHP Chris Archer said he was done in by the five walks as much as anything last night in letting a 4-0 lead get away, and he was more concerned about the one run he allowed in the sixth after getting the first two Tigers out than the three that scored in the fifth after 1B James Loney's error.

UPDATE, 5:10: Myers said he is ready to go, that both wrists and his legs feel good and he has his confidence back. Maddon said they are glad to have him, tho he likely will DH only the first few days as Rays think he is more comfortable at the plate than in the field. ... LHP Jake McGee won't be available tonight after throwing a season-high 35 pitches (tho 4 on an intentional walk) last night night. ... OF David DeJesus (left hand) is playing for Class A Charlotte tonight as part of his rehab; C Ryan Hanigan (oblique) is scheduled to join them on Friday. …

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Rays activate Myers, send down Belnome

The Rays activated outfielder Wil Myers from the disabled list today.

WILL VRAGOVIC | Times

The Rays activated outfielder Wil Myers from the disabled list today.

The Rays activated OF Wil Myers from the disabled list today and sent INF Vince Belnome back to Triple-A.

Myers has been out since May 30 with a broken right wrist. He has been on a rehab assignment at Triple-A Durham where in seven games he hit .250 (6-for-24) with two homers, six RBIs, seven walks and three steals.

Belnome got his first major-league and RBI on Tuesday.

To make room on the 40-man roster for Myers (who had been on the 60-day DL), Jerry Sands was moved from the 15- to the 60-day DL. Sands is out for the season after surgery.

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Video: David Price returns to Trop

Former Rays ace David Price returned to the Trop Tuesday for the first time since the July 31 trade; he will pitch against the Rays on Thursday,

 

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For starters, Rays vs. Tigers, with Price in the house

David Price throwing a bullpen session today at the Trop

MARC TOPKIN / TAMPA BAY TIMES

David Price throwing a bullpen session today at the Trop

UPDATE, 5:08: OF Wil Myers is continuing his rehab assignment tonight in Triple-A Durham, but manager Joe Maddon said he could rejoin the Rays soon.

OF David DeJesus and C Ryan Hanigan both took batting practice before the game. DeJesus said his left hand feels better after a few days off. He is expected to rejoin the Class A Stone Crabs tomorrow to resume his rehab work. Hanigan said he feels like he's finally "over the hump" and could begin playing rehab games in the next few days.

Former Rays ace David Price spoke to reporters in the Tigers' dugout - we'll have more on that later.

Lineups

Tigers

Kinsler 2B

Hunter RF

Cabrera 1B

Martinez DH

Castellanos 3B

Avila C

Romine SS

Davis CF

Scherzer RHP

Rays

Jennings CF

Zobrist 2B

Joyce LF

Longoria 3B

Loney 1B

Escobar SS

Belnome DH

Casali C

Kiermaier RF

Archer RHP

DEVELOPING: The Rays are back at the Trop today to open a three-game series with the Tigers tonight, with David Price the featured attraction.

Price was traded from the Rays to the Tigers on July 31, and makes his first trip back to the Trop, speaking to the media this afternoon and then pitching on Thursday.

The Rays lost two of three to the Yankees over the weekend. …

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Rays right-hander Brad Boxberger has earned his spot

Since the Rays recalled Brad Boxberger in May, he has solidified his spot in the bullpen with some of the best statistics in the league. Read our indepth look at his rise in the Rays bullpen.

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For starters, Rays vs. Yankees and the quest for .500 (again)

Today's lineups:

Yankees

Gardner  LF

Jeter DH

Ellsbury CF

Teixeira 1B

Beltran RF

McCann C

Headley 3B

Drew SS

Prado 2B

Kuroda RHP

Rays

Jennings CF

Zobrist 2B

Joyce LF

Longoria 3B

Loney 1B

Escobar SS

Belnome DH

Molina C

Kiermaier RF

Hellickson RHP

 

DEVELOPING: The Rays are back under .500 again and have another shot at evening their record. They host the Yankees at 1:40 in the final game of the three-game series.

RHP Jeremy Hellickson (1-1, 2.03) will go for a third consecutive solid outing after a slow start in his return from the DL. The Yankees will start RHP Hiroki Kuroda (7-8, 4.03).

Lineups and more when available.

 

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Rays call up Vince Belnome

ST. PETERSBURG - The Rays recalled INF Vince Belnome before today's game against the Yankees. He takes the roster spot of RHP Brandon Gomes, who was optioned to Triple-A Durham on Friday night. 

Belnome was 0-for-3 in his only game with the Rays earlier this year, against the Tigers in July.

Belnome, who will bat seventh as the designated hitter today, was hitting .241 with 41 RBIs in Durham this season but hit .313 for the Bulls last month.

He's coming off of a rough schedule in the minors. Durham played four doubleheaders in a span of seven days. He didn't go to sleep until 2 a.m. after last night's 11-inning game, and he was up at 6 to catch a flight here.

"It doesn't get much better than that," Belnome said. "You can always find some energy if you're coming up to the big leagues."

 

 

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For starters, Rays vs. Yankees and the quest for a winning record

UPDATE, 2:25 p.m.: After optioning RHP Brandon Gomes to Triple-A Durham last night, the Rays recalled INF Vince Belnome. You can read a little more on that here.

Today's lineups:

Yankees

Gardner LF

Jeter DH

Ellsbury CF

Teixeira 1B

Beltran RF

Headley 3B

Prado 2B

Cervelli C

Ryan SS

Greene RHP

Rays

Jennings CF

Zobrist 2B

Joyce LF

Longoria 3B

Loney 1B

Escobar SS

Belnome DH

Casali C

Kiermaier RF

Smyly LHP

 

DEVELOPING: For the first time in almost four months, the Rays begin today with a .500 record.

They'll try to take the next step - getting a winning record - at 4:10 with the second game of a three-game series against the Yankees at Tropicana Field.

LHP Drew Smyly (7-10, 3.73) will make his home debut as a Ray after two road starts. The Yankees will start RHP Shane Greene (3-1, 2.89).

The Rays earned a 5-0 victory last night, but don't expect another shutout: The Yankees haven't been shut out in back-ti-baclk games since May 1999, a major league record 2,515 consecutive games (per the Elias Sports Bureau).

Lineups and more when available.

 

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Gomes sent down, position player on way

With their bullpen stabilized after playing three extra-inning games in a five-day span, the Rays sent extra reliever RHP Brandon Gomes back to Triple-A Durham after Friday's game.

A corresponding move, most likely to restore a fourth posiiton player to the bench, will be announced Saturday. INF Vince Belnome; newcomer INF Nick Franklin, acquired in the David Price trade; and Tim Beckham, recently activated off the DL would be among the possibilities.

For what it's worth Belnome was removed from Durham's game after nine innings, with the score 0-0.

 

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For starters, Rays vs. Yankees and the quest for .500

Alex Cobb will try to help the Rays become the fourth team ever to get back to .500 after being at leaset 18 games under.

WILL VRAGOVIC | Times

Alex Cobb will try to help the Rays become the fourth team ever to get back to .500 after being at leaset 18 games under.

Yankees

Gardner LF

Jeter SS

Ellsbury CF

Teixeira 1B

Beltran DH

Headley 3B

Drew 2B

Prado RF

Cervelli C

McCarthy RHP

Rays

Jennings CF

Zobrist LF

Joyce DH

Longoria 3B

Loney 1B

Forsythe 2B

Escobar SS

Casali C

Kiermaier RF

Cobb RHP

 

DEVELOPING: After a three-city, 11-day road trip, the Rays are back at Tropicana Field for the first of a three-game series with the Yankees.

RHP Alex Cobb (7-6, 3.41) will try to help the Rays make history. With a win tonight, the Rays would become the fourth team ever to get back to .500 after being at leaset 18 games under. The Yankees will start RHP Brandon McCarthy (4-1, 2.21).

Lineups and more when available.

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