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For starters, Rays at Yankees, if weather cooperates


UPDATE, 6:51: Plan now is to start on time -- and see what happens.

UPDATE, 6:18: The tarp is on the field and rain is falling at Yankee Stadium. Rays manager Joe Maddon said they were told to expect up to a two-hour delay at the start of the game but that the rain should clear then.

UPDATE, 6:15: Maddon said he had "an afternoon epiphany" deciding that he wanted to split up his three left-handed hitters (Pena, Joyce, Scott) and that Upton was swinging the bat well, which was the reason for the change to the order.

UPDATE, 4:38: Slight change to Rays lineup, Pena will now hit second and Upton third.

UPDATE, 3:45: As expected LF Desmond Jennings is not in the Rays lineup tonight, with Matt Joyce in left and Ben Zobrist hitting leadoff. The lineup: Zobrist rf, Upton cf, Pena 1b, Joyce lf, Scott dh, Keppinger 3b, Rhymes 2b, S-Rod ss, Molina c, Shields p

BREAKING: The Rays are in New York to open a three-game series against the Yankees tonight and will have ace James Shields on the mound, if the weather cooperates.

Showers are forecast to start in late afternoon and continue throughout the evening, with gusty winds and temperatures in the 60s.

LF Desmond Jennings is here with the Rays and still on the active roster, though his status is uncertain after leaving Sunday's game with what was diagnosed as a left knee sprain.

The Rays have lost their last two, to Oakland, after a six-game winning streak, and do start play today as co-holders of the best record in baseball at 19-10, shared with the Orioles, Rangers and Dodgers.

The Rays have beaten the Yankees a franchise-record 7 straight times, including the season-opening sweep at the Trop.

Shields, who is 5-0 after a no-decision on opening day against the Yankees, could tie the Rays franchise record by winning his first six decisions - a record he shares with Jeff Niemann and J.P. Howell.



[Last modified: Thursday, June 7, 2012 12:41am]


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