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Buzz at the Trop



Tropicana Field was buzzing from early afternoon as fans lined up for the 4:15 opening of the gates, greeted by Rays players, manager Joe Maddon and new principal owner Stuart Sternberg. Many waited it line just to say "Thanks' to Sternberg. The game was officially sold out at about 1:30 p.m., though the Rays decided to sell some partially obstructed view seats at the top of the stadium. The stadium looks clean and fresh, a welcome change. And there seems to be a heavy dose of Bruce Springsteen in the pre-game music rotation.

2B Jorge Cantu's bruised left foot has improved to the point that he will be available to pinch hit Monday night and expects to return to the lineup on Tuesday. He has been out since Friday night.

SS Julio Lugo expects to be fully recovered from his abdominal strain when he is eligible to come off the disabled list on April 19.

Though the Rays have already played six games, Monday is opening day for bench coach Bill Evers, who missed the first week recovering from surgery to remove a benign tumor. Evers spent 30 years in the minors before landing his first major-league job, and his parents, Jayne and Bill, came down from New York to see his first game.

[Last modified: Monday, December 21, 2009 12:30am]


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