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For starters, Rays at Tigers - at 7:30, if it doesn't rain any more

UPDATE, 7:45: The game started at 7:32, and the skies have cleared some, though there is a chance for more rain later.

UPDATE, 6:50: The Tigers just announced that first pitch is now scheduled for around 7:30.

UPDATE, 6:44: Grounds crew is taking tarp off, but there's some large puddles, the field has to be lined and neither starter has come out for warm-ups. This game isn't starting on time.

UPDATE, 6:15: Ruggiano was supposed to be in the lineup, but came down with a nasty stomach virus and wasn't feeling well enough to play, so that's why Fuld is starting. Ruggiano may be available later if he feels better. ... Also, Maddon said Sonnanstine is locked in to start Wednesday.

UPDATE, 6:13: Rays were told the game would start on time, but that appears rather unlikely as tarp is still on, field is still wet and radar still looks bad.

UPDATE, 4:50: One band of heavy rain came thru Comerica Park, more expected; but Tigers people are optimistic game w/Rays will happen.

Here's the scene at 3:59, bracing for a storm:



Here's what it was like a half-hour earlier:


Here is the scene at Comerica Park around 3:30, and that's ex-Ray Joaquin Benoit and ex-Tiger Matt Joyce chatting on the field.  Photos by Marc Topkin.

 UPDATE, 3:54: Rays lineup has a different look vs. lefty Coke, now the question is if they get to use it given forecast:
Upton cf
Damon dh
Longoria 3b
Zobrist rf
Rodriguez 2b
Lopez 1b
Shoppach c
Johnson ss
Fuld lf
Hellickson p


DEVELOPING: The Rays are back to American League competition as they face the Tigers tonight in Detroit, on the third and final leg of their rugged road trip.

The forecast is ominous, though, according to, with rain expected to start in late afternoon, and estimated at 100 percent around gametime, and not clearing until around 9. And, just to reinforce the doubt, the tarp was put on field at around 3:45.

RHP Jeremy Hellickson will be on the mound, seeking to become the first Rays rookie to win five consecutive starts. It's been done three times, by Rolando Arrojo in 1998, by James Shields in 2005 and Wade Davis last season.

The Tigers are starting lefty Phil Coke, so look for the Rays to use as many of their right-handed hitters, including Felipe Lopez.


[Last modified: Wednesday, June 22, 2011 12:17am]


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