For starters, Rays-Yanks, eyeing two of three
Update 5:32: Some injury updates out of Joe Maddon's pre-game session, with OF Fernando Perez taking batting practice on the field (along with 2B Akinori Iwamura). Maddon said both are progressing well and could be ready before the rosters expand at the beginning of September.
With Perez, who suffered a left wrist injury in spring training that required surgery, has been taking BP at the complex in Port Charlotte, and Maddon said he's swinging with "no hesitation," and the Rays are getting ready to figure out when they can get him out for a rehab assignment.
In other pre-game tid-bits, LF Carl Crawford said he had fun answering kids questions in the clinic he and Yankees LHP CC Sabathia put on for the Boys & Girls Club, a place that played a huge part in his life growing up in Houston.
Crawford said he wanted to spread the message to young African American kids that playing baseball is fun, and something that they should try.
An event for kids from Boys & Girls clubs hosted by Carl Crawford and CC Sabathia is just wrapping up at the Trop as the Rays are getting ready to face the Yankees again, hoping to take the series by winning two out of three.
Doing so would get them back to within 5 1/2 games of first place, and get them back to a season-high matching 10 games over .500 at 56-46.
The Rays will send out the latest version of their usual lineup to support Matt Garza, who is coming off his spectacular nine-inning duel with Roy Halladay in Toronto last week.