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For starters, Rays at Yankees

26

February

3:51 pm. Rays lose 5-1 to the Yankees, with their only run an RBI single by Jon Weber.

Manager Joe Maddon raved about RHP Wade Davis, how aggressive he was and how well he pitched inside to hitters. Davis pitched two scoreless innings, striking out three in what he labeled a "confidence boost."

Maddon said he was pleased with the defense and baserunning, and isn't concerned about the hitting (one run in two spring games), saying it will come.

3:07 pm Well, Shelley Duncan delivered a big blow against the Rays - again. Duncan, whose spike-high slide into Akinori Iwamura in last year's spring training ignited a brawl, made an impact with his bat this time, crushing a three-run homer off Calvin Medlock in the seventh.

It's now 5-1 Yankees.

3:04 pm. Sorry for the delay, down in the clubhouse.....Elliott Johnson singled and scored in the seventh inning, after Jon Weber knocked him in with another single.

The Yankees had tacked on another run in the fifth thanks to back-to-back doubles by Xavier Nady and Jorge Posada (both off Winston Abreu).

Rays down 2-1 in seventh.

1:55 pm. RHP Chad Orvella, who missed last season with right shoulder surgery, got off to a rough start in his spring debut, giving up a leadoff homer to Jorge Posada on his first pitch in the third inning.

But Orvella bounced back, getting the next three outs, including striking out Johnny Damon looking. Still 1-0 Yanks.

1:43 pm. RHP Wade Davis has been impressive in the first two innings, facing some of the Yankees best hitters.

Davis had a 1-2-3 first, striking out slugging first baseman Mark Teixeira - clocking 94 mph. Then, to open the second, Davis went right after Alex Rodriguez, getting ahead 1-2 before striking him out swinging.

He then struck out Cano swinging on a 94 mph pitch. So he's K'd out three of the first five batters he faced.

1:27 pm. RHP Phil Hughes, one of the Yankees top pitching prospects, was a little off, hitting two Rays batters in the first inning (no brawls, no worries). But the Rays failed to score.

This will be the first outing this spring for the Rays prospect Wade Davis, who faces most of the Yankees regulars.

1:14 pm. There about ready to get started, with former Yankee Bernie Williams throwing out the ceremonial first pitch. There appears to be good contingent of Rays fans here at Steinbrenner Field..

The Rays are packing for the 8 a.m. bus to Tampa, with the players not on the trip scheduled for a 9 a.m. workout.

Here is the Rays starting lineup posted in their clubhouse; Joe Smith will add the Yankees lineup from Tampa:

RAYS
Adam Kennedy, 2b
Carl Crawford, lf
Willy Aybar, dh
Morgan Ensberg, 3b
Ben Zobrist, ss
Gabe Kapler, cf
Chris Richard, 1b
Shawn Riggans, c
Justin Ruggiano, rf
Wade Davis, rhp

YANKEES
Damon LF
Jeter SS
Teixeira 1B
Rodriguez 3B
Cano 2B
Nady RF
Posada DH
Molina C
Cabrera CF

A couple things to watch are Kapler's play in center, as the Rays by the end of the spring have to be sure that he can fill in there for B.J. Upton when needed; Kennedy's play at second, as the gritty veteran tries to impress the Rays, or one of the other teams, to give him another chance; and the same for Ensberg at third.

[Last modified: Monday, December 21, 2009 12:45am]

    

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