For starters: Rays vs. Orioles, day two
UPDATE, 5:31: It's kind of Iowa night at the Trop, as Des Moines native Jeremy Hellickson is on the mound for the Rays, and legendary University of Iowa wrestling coach Dan Gable is throwing out the first pitch.
UPDATE, 5:22: Can't update blog from the field, so here - finally - are the lineups. The three key decisions for manager Joe Maddon were whether to have Kelly Johnson or Sam Fuld as the lone lefty in the lineup, then after picking Johnson whether to play him at left or at third, and then whether to bat Ryan Roberts or Sean Rodriguez second.
Here is what he decided:
The reasoning was that Johnson matched up better with O's LHP Wei-Yin Chen, that while Jonnson has never played first in a big-league game he also wasn't yet comfortable with the Trop roof, and that he liked Rodriguez better at the top to try to get off to quick start, even though he is 0-for-7 vs. Chen. Roberts is 2-for-9.
DEVELOPING: After losing Tuesday's much-anticipated opener, the Rays are set to take on the Orioles in the second game of the season, with RHP Jeremy Hellickson on the mound.
The Orioles are starting LHP Wei-Yin Chen, which means the Rays' lineup will have a different look. Manager Joe Maddon is planning to use only one left-handed hitter, with newcomer Shelley Duncan in the lineup and Jose Lobaton behind the plate rather than Jose Molina.
The Rays felt pretty good about things went overall on Tuesday, rallying to take the lead in the sixth but then giving it back, and more, when lefty reliever Jake McGee made a few mistakes in the seventh.