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Rays Price not bothered by Ortiz's comments

One day after Red Sox slugger David Ortiz declared "war" on Rays ace lefty David Price, the former Cy Young winner said he was neither surprised - nor bothered - by the comments.

"Not one bit," he said.

After Price drilled Ortiz with a 94 mile per hour fastball, Ortiz said he lost all respect for the former Cy Young winner, saying he acted like a girl and (b---), and that he better bring his gloves next time because "it's a war."

"For as many people as I quote unquote lost respect for, I gained respect from a lot more people," Price said. "And I know that's a fact."

Price wasn't bothered by what Ortiz said, other than the "war" reference.

"He was mad, I get it," Price said. "You say stupid stuff when you're mad. Been there. I'm sure

he probably wishes he didn’t say some of the things she said. You can't relate the game we play to a war. Kellen Winslow got a lot of crap for saying he was a soldier. No you're not a soldier. This is not war. We have troops fighting for us that are in a war. It's not a good comparison." …

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For starters, Rays at Red Sox, the night after

Update 5:55 p.m. One day after Red Sox slugger David Ortiz declared "war" on Rays ace lefty David Price, the former Cy Young winner said he was neither surprised - nor bothered - by the comments.

"Not one bit," he said.

After Price drilled Ortiz with a 94 mile per hour fastball, Ortiz said he lost all respect for the former Cy Young winner, saying he acted like a girl and (b---), and that he better bring his gloves next time because "it's a war."

"For as many people as I quote unquote lost respect for, I gained respect from a lot more people," Price said. "And I know that's a fact."

Price wasn't bothered by what Ortiz said, other than the "war" reference.

"He was mad, I get it," Price said. "You say stupid stuff when you're mad. Been there. I'm sure

he probably wishes he didn’t say some of the things she said. You can't relate the game we play to a war. Kellen Winslow got a lot of crap for saying he was a soldier. No you're not a soldier. This is not war. We have troops fighting for us that are in a war. It's not a good comparison." …

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For starters, Rays at Red Sox, with Zobrist back

Update 4:17 p.m. Ben Zobrist said his rehab assignment wasn't the way they drew it up, getting sick early in the week and having to wait through a rain delay Wednesday in Port Charlotte.

But Zobrist said one game was all he needed to know that he was ready to come back, and is excited to rejoin the Rays today in Boston.

"I feel healthy, the DL time is done, I defintely want to be in there to help the team," he said.

Zobrist said the left thumb isn't an issue swinging or fielding, though he's more comfortable hitting from the left side than right (since he had four of his five at-bats left-handed for Stone Crabs). The only protective brace he'll wear will be a padded mitten while on the bases, much like CF Desmond Jennings does. And after going on the DL each time he' tried the crafty headfirst slide, Zobrist made another vow;

"No more swim moves," he said.

*C Jose Molina is also back in the lineup, saying there is no residual issues from him getting hit in the mask Wednesday with a foul tip. Molina said he didn't have to undergo any concussion tests, that getting taken out was manager Joe Maddon's call. …

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Rays preparing for everything as draft approaches

With a week to go until the start of baseball's draft, Rays scouts and officials are convening in St. Petersburg feeling they are extremely well prepared for anything that could happen before they make the 20th pick while admitting there is no way to know what will.

"We have some idea what might be there," scouting director R.J. Harrison said, "but … it's unpredictable and our experience has been over the last few years that the best thing you can do is just be prepared as well as you can and react when the time comes."

Harrison said the draft class is solid overall, probably deeper in high school pitchers than position players, with "a pretty good crop" of college pitchers and some college position players "that we're fairly intrigued by."

The Rays lined their draft board up Wednesday and now will work on adjusting and anticipating what the teams ahead of them may do starting June 5, which, as they've learned in recent years, can be surprising. …

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Figueroa optioned to Durham with Zobrist return looming

Ben Zobrist has been out since dislocating his left thumb on May 14 in Seattle.

WILL VRAGOVIC | Times

Ben Zobrist has been out since dislocating his left thumb on May 14 in Seattle.

With 2B Ben Zobrist expected to be activated from the disabled list on Friday, the Rays on Thursday sent INF Cole Figueroa to Triple-A Durham.

Figueroa played in seven games, going 3-for-12 including a walkoff double last Friday, in his first stint in the major leagues.

Zobrist has been out since dislocating his left thumb on May 14 in Seattle. He played a rehab game on Wednesday for the Class A Stone Crabs and was scheduled to play again tonight, but the Rays changed plans and have him headed to Boston.

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Hanigan put on DL, Kiermaier called up

The Rays placed catcher Ryan Hanigan on the disabled list with a right hamstring strain.

WILL VRAGOVIC | Times

The Rays placed catcher Ryan Hanigan on the disabled list with a right hamstring strain.

The Rays placed catcher Ryan Hanigan on the disabled list with a right hamstring strain.

OF Kevin Kiermaier was called up and is with the team in Toronto.

Hanigan's right hamstring has bothered him since the end of the last west coast trip, forcing him to miss three games. He tried to manage it, but had a setback during Monday's game.

Hanigan said he had to get talked into the DL but realizes it's the smart decision. Manager Joe Maddon points out he doesn't want the injury to linger the rest of the season, better to get it shored up now.

"It was tough," Hanigan said. "It's not getting better."

Hanigan is optimistic it'll be a short stay, planning several days of rest and treatment before starting to get it ready in a week. Maddon anticipates it being not much longer than the 15-day stint.

With Hanigan out, Jose Molina will make most of the starts, including tonight and likely Friday in Boston. Rookie Ali Solis, called up yesterday, will also get some playing time.

 

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For starters, Rays at Jays, trying to avoid sweep

Chris Archer, coming off a growth moment in throwing 119 pitches his last outing, will be on the mound, hoping to slow down a locked-in Blue Jays lineup that has combined for 19 runs (and six homers) the past two games.

AP photo

Chris Archer, coming off a growth moment in throwing 119 pitches his last outing, will be on the mound, hoping to slow down a locked-in Blue Jays lineup that has combined for 19 runs (and six homers) the past two games.

Update 5:30 p.m. Rays manager Joe Maddon said as tough as C Ryan Hanigan is, the smart move was to put him on the DL, so that he won't have to deal with the lingering hamstring injury all year.

Maddon believes it'll be not much longer than the minimal 15-day stint. "It was tough," Hanigan said. "It was just not getting any better."

With Hanigan out, C Jose Molina will do most of the catching, starting tonight and Friday against the Red Sox, though Ali Solis will get his playing time too.

*OF Kevin Kiermaier says he was excited to come back, hoping that after a couple cameos in his first call-ups, he'll have a longer stay as he replaces Brandon Guyer. Maddon said it's possible Kiermaier can be around longer.

Kiermaier said he tweaked his left knee Friday while stretching in the outfield, but he's 100 percent now and ready to go.

*Ben Zobrist is on track to return Friday in Boston, as long as his games tonight and Thursday with Class-A Charlotte go well. INF Cole Figueroa would be the likely one to get sent down. …

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Rays call up catcher Ali Solis, Hanigan may land on DL

Ali Solis, the primary catcher for Triple-A Durham, was hitting .186 with a homer and 12 RBI in 29 games this season.

CHRIS ZUPPA | Times

Ali Solis, the primary catcher for Triple-A Durham, was hitting .186 with a homer and 12 RBI in 29 games this season.

The Rays recalled C Ali Solis from Triple-A Durham, providing insurance behind the plate with C Ryan Hanigan battling a sore right hamstring.

"It's kind of been a problem," Hanigan said.

Turns out, Hanigan may eventually land on the disabled list, with the team likely to make a decision in the next few days. Hanigan said the hamstring, which sidelined him for three games on the last road trip out West, is not healing like it should, and he suffered a set-back Monday night when it was tight.

Hanigan wants to play through it, hoping that with Thursday's off-day he can rest it the next few days. But the problem is he doesn't know how long it'll take to get better, so putting him on the DL might be the best option.

"It's a tough call," Hanigan said. "Because it's not excruciating. I have been functional. But it's bothersome. I think, being a catcher, it's a little tougher putting weight on it..

"I don't want to (go on the DL). That's not what I want to do at all, to tell you the truth. I don't know what's best, I'm going to leave it up to the trainers. They know where I stand. I'd like to try to keep playing if I can stay functional." …

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For starters, Rays at Jays

Alex Cobb will make his second start since coming off the disabled list.

WILL VRAGOVIC | Times

Alex Cobb will make his second start since coming off the disabled list.

Update 5:58 Rays manager Joe Maddon said it's possible C Ryan Hanigan lands on the disabled list, but they're going to see how he responds to treatment the next few days. Noting hamstring injuries are tricky and difficult on a catcher, Maddon said they want to be cautious, knowing how important Hanigan is in the long-term.

Maddon said rookie C Ali Solis, called up today, was brought here to play, so he could start Wednesday against the Jays. It would be his first MLB start.

As expected, Solis was excited to get the call, saying while he's struggled offensively at Durham (.198) his defense is his strong suit and he's ready to play.

*INF Ben Zobrist (dislocated left thumb) was sick today so he won't play tonight for Class-A Charlotte, but Maddon said he could still rejoin the team as scheduled Friday in Boston, as he can play Wednesday and Thursday for Port Charlotte. Zobrist did hit against velocity today, so he's gotten some work in.

*Maddon said the key is to get to Buehrle early, before he settles in, noting how well he works both sides of the plate and doesn't give in. …

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Longoria second among AL third basemen in All-Star voting

Rays star Evan Longoria may not be having his best season, but he's ranked second among American League third basemen in All-Star voting.

Longoria has 407,724 votes, trailing only A's Josh Donaldson (464,367), with Rangers' Adrian Beltre third, Orioles' Manny Machado fourth. Longoria is hitting .271 with five homers and 23 RBI, starting to get into a good grove at the plate over the weekend.

No other Rays are represented among the position players in this first update. LHP Jake McGee and 1B James Loney could be considered as Tampa Bay selections.

Angels' Mike Trout is the overall leading vote-getter at 764,007, with Yankees legend Derek Jeter leading all shortstops as he continues his farewell season.

The All-Star game will be at Target Field in Minnesota July 15. In-stadium balloting concludes on June 25, with fans also able to vote online at mlb.com

 

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Guyer put on DL, Colome called up

Alex Colome has been reinstated from his 50-game drug suspension and joined the team in Toronto, where he will work out of the bullpen.

WILL VRAGOVIC | Times

Alex Colome has been reinstated from his 50-game drug suspension and joined the team in Toronto, where he will work out of the bullpen.

The Rays have placed outfielder Brandon Guyer on the 15-day disabled list with a fractured left thumb, suffered while attempting a diving catch in Sunday's game. It's unclear how long he'll be sidelined.

RHP Alex Colome has been reinstated from his 50-game drug suspension and joined team in Toronto, where he will work out of the bullpen. Colome said he was very surprised and grateful to get the opportunity so soon after his suspension was over, and is comfortable working out of the pen. He said he still doesn't know what he took to trigger the positive test.

"I made a big mistake," Colome said through bench coach Dave Martinez. "I want to apologize to my teammates, the organization, to everybody that's been by my side. I want to put it behind me and do the best to help us win."

Colome made three starts this season for Class-A Charlotte on the rehab assignment, working 11 innings (two earned runs, 10 strikeouts, five walks), and said he's had experience in the bullpen in the Dominican.

"It doesn't bother me at all," he said. …

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For starters, Rays at Jays

Erik Bedard has been one of the more consistent members of the Rays rotation the past few weeks.

WILL VRAGOVIC | Times

Erik Bedard has been one of the more consistent members of the Rays rotation the past few weeks.

Updated 6:15 p.m. The Rays expect Guyer to be out just three weeks or so, as he has a hairline crack in his left thumb. He suffered the injury in the fifth inning, but stayed in the game, got a hit, not knowing the severity until a post-game x-ray. Maddon lauded Guyer for staying in, allowing the Rays to use Jennings later in the comeback.

Maddon said it was unfortunate considering how well Guyer was playing, pointing out he's turned into a major league player, but believes he'll make a seamless transition back once he's ready. Maddon said Guyer was "pretty distraught" after knowing he'd have another bit of adversity.

*Maddon said they needed some coverage in the bullpen in case of a short outing by Bedard today, and Colome provided the "perfect fit," a pitcher who can go long, or short. Maddon admits there's a concern that some others at Triple-A might not understand how Colome got the call right after the suspension, but they had to do what was best for the Rays in this spot.

*Maddon said he hopes there's no additional discipline from Sunday's melee, and would be disappointed if there was - especially to Escobar or Rodriguez - whom he feels weren't in the wrong. …

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The full Maddon on benches-clearing incident with Red Sox

Excerpts from Rays manager Joe Maddon's comments about Sunday's benches-clearing incident as a result of the Red Sox's complaining about Yunel Escobar taking third with a five-run lead:

Overall reaction:

"They took umbrage with the fact that Escobar had stolen third base with … a five-run lead in the eighth inning. That's not even nearly as egregious as last year in the playoffs then, correct? Correct? Last year in the playoffs when they had an 8-2 lead in the eighth inning when Ellsbury led off with the single, and they stole second base and they ended up beating us 12-2 in that game. I think that was a little more egregious than their interpretation of tonight. …

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Video, photo gallery from Rays heated win over Red Sox

Our video report and photo gallery from Rays' 8-5 Sunday win over the Red Sox that included a benches-clearing incident. Video by Dirk Shadd.

 

 

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Benches empty; Rays Escobar and S-Rod, Red Sox's Gomes ejected

Rays SS Yunel Escobar and Red Sox OF Jonny Gomes were ejected following a seventh-inning benches clearing incident. Rays IN/OF Sean Rodriguez was also ejected.

Escobar, after doubling to extend the Rays lead to 8-3, took third uncontested, and then took exception to some comments from the Red Sox dugout, apparently from David Ross. Escobar grew more animated in his response, pointing repeatedly into the dugout, and broke away from 3B coach Tom Foley, who was restraining him.

The Sox then responded, Gomes leading the charge out of the dugout and shoving Escobar, as both benches emptied. There was some additional pushing and shoving as the umpires eventually got them separated. Rodriguez semed particularly vocal, which may have led to his ejection.

 

 

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