Rays-Tigers by the bay
Update 4:23 Rays win 7-2. That makes it 13 wins, one shy of their record for any spring.
Update 3:48 Rays extend lead to 7-2 against former teammate Bobby Seay.
Update 3:41 The attendance was 6,755 - a record for a Rays game at this stadium.
Update 3:35 Rays lead 5-2 in the eighth. C Mike Difelice made a big play when he got run into at the plate by Detroit's Edgar Renteria and hung on to the ball.
Update 2:34 Shields worked impressively into the fifth, and Grant Balfour finished. Rays are up 3-0 and coming up in the bottom of the fifth.
Update 2:14 The Rays scored 3 in the third, and could have had more as Carlos Pena and B.J. Upton both hit sac flies deep to centerfield. Willis is done after three; Shields has allowed only one hit a first inning single, but three walks and a hit batter.
Update 1:51 Both Dontrelle Willis and James Shields are pitching well, and it's 0-0 in the bottom of the third.
Update 1:28 The game sold out, and there's a heavy Tigers presence in the crowd. It's 0-0 in the second.
Update 1:10 The game got started in interesting fashion, with Rays starter James Shields hitting Tigers leadoff man Curtis Granderson with his second pitch. Shields got out of the inning without giving up a run.
All the injury updates - see previous blog entry about Scott Kazmir likely headed to the DL - occupied much of the pre-game talk. Here are the lineups:
James Shields, the Rays likely opening day starter, is on the mound, with Troy Percival among those also scheduled to pitch.
St. Pierre, c
Dontrelle Willis is starting, with ex-Ray Bobby Seay also scheduled to pitch.