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For starters, Rays at Orioles, in the sunshine



UPDATE, 2:21: After hitting another three-run homer on the first pitch he saw today (having hit one on the last pitch he saw Tuesday), Carlos Pena earned the respect of Baltimore manager Dave Trembley, who intentionally walked him with two outs and a man on third in the third inning.

UPDATE, 1:03: Maddon said he just wanted to get Bartlett off his feet for what amounts to 2 1/2 days, though he is available today if needed. ... John Jaso will probably catch just one of the games in Boston, either Saturday or Monday.

The Orioles lineup:
Jones cf
Wigginton 2b
Markakis rf
Tejada 3b
Reimold lf
Scott dh
Atkins 1b
Tatum c
Izturis ss
Bergesen p

UPDATE, 11:40: Jason Bartlett has the day off.
 Rodriguez 2b,
Crawford lf,
Zobrist rf,
Longoria 3b,
Pena 1b,
Upton cf,
Burrell dh,
Brignac ss,
Navarro c,
Price p

The Rays are getting ready for the matinee series finale in Baltimore, and the best news is that the sun is out and the temperatures are back into the high 50s and headed to the 60s.

The Rays are off to their best eight-game start in franchise history, and have won their first two road games in a season for the first time.

Ben Zobrist goes into play today with a 16-game hitting streak (the final eight of last season and the first eight this season), tying the fourth longest in club history and three shy of Jason Bartlett's team record of 19 set last year.

Bartlett has a streak of his own, having hit in his last 18 games at Camden Yards, matching the longest active streak at an opposing ballpark. Baltimore's Julio Lugo hit in 18 straight at Philadelphia and Chicago's Andruw Jones 18 straight in Milwaukee.

Carlos Pena's 10th-inning homer on Tuesday was the 8th of his career in extra innings, and a team-record fourth as a Ray, all since the 2008 season, and no player has more over that span. He also has 10 extra-inning RBIs over the last two-plus seasons, only Los Angeles' Matt Kemp has as many.

Also, Pena's homer was his 118th as a Ray, 10 shy of Aubrey Huff’s team record. And, maybe most amazing of all, Pena has five infield singles this season; the rest of the Rays have three. "That's what happens when you hang around with Carl Crawford for three years,'' Pena joked. "Something's go to rub off. Speed's contagious.''


[Last modified: Friday, May 14, 2010 12:15am]


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