Thursday, February 22, 2018
Tampa Bay Rays

Rays win first replay challenge

ST. PETERSBURG — RF Wil Myers said he had no doubt he held on to the ball on his sliding catch during the seventh inning Friday.

So when first-base umpire Hunter Wendelstedt credited the Rangers' J.P. Arencibia with a single, Myers signaled to the dugout with words and his arms.

"Demonstrative," Rays manager Joe Maddon said. "Wil is one of those guys. He's not going to dissemble. He's going to tell you the truth right there."

So Maddon issued his first challenge under the new replay system. And after a delay of 1 minute, 43 seconds, crew chief Jerry Layne agreed with him, calling Arencibia out and ending the inning.

"I think it went properly," Maddon said.

Maddon said Wendelstedt's rationale was he saw "a lot of white" as Myers hit the ground. The ball did nearly pop out of his glove.

"On the replay, it looked like it was closer than I thought it was," said Myers, who felt better after missing Thursday's game with the Blue Jays due to the flu. "(The ball) hit my palm and rolled off my glove. That's what the umpire saw, that it was at the tip of my glove. Lucky it got overturned."

There wasn't much argument from Rangers manager Ron Washington.

"I knew he had caught it," he said. "Just waiting for the umpires to decide."

Price check LHP David Price hasn't had a ton of success against the Rangers heading into tonight's start.

But Price said the best moment of his career might have been the last time he faced Texas, a complete game Sept. 30 in a 5-2 Game 163 win that lifted the Rays into the playoffs.

"To be able to step up in that moment, that was probably the coolest one, I think, I've ever gotten," Price said. "It, to me, was cooler than Game 7 (of the American League Championship Series against the Red Sox in 2008). … (It) was cooler than pitching in the World Series to me. That was my game. That was fun. That was a very special night for myself and all my teammates."

Before that game, Price was 1-7 with a 5.57 ERA in 11 starts against Texas, including the postseason. While the Rangers' lineup has changed some — they traded 2B Ian Kinsler to the Tigers for 1B Prince Fielder and signed LF Shin-Soo Choo during the offseason — Price said they "can absolutely do some damage against you."

Price was sharp in his opening-day start, allowing two runs over 71/3 innings in a 9-2 win over Toronto. But he said he wants to do a better job of finishing hitters when they have two strikes, especially with two outs.

"Those are the times I want to be able to put my foot down and get us back in the dugout," Price said. "That's something I didn't feel like I did as well four days ago."

BOUNCE BACK: OF David DeJesus hadn't expected to test his bruised right foot so much Thursday in his return to the lineup, legging out a double and a triple in five at-bats. But DeJesus was pleased with how he felt Friday. "After all that pounding, (the foot) really responded well," he said.

MISCELLANY: RHP Juan Carlos Oviedo (right elbow surgery) will start a rehab assignment with Triple-A Durham. The hope is he'll return in mid April. … Patrick Wilson, an actor, singer and Broadway performer who grew up in St. Petersburg, sang the national anthem. … 3B Evan Longoria has joined Bright House Sports Network, the Rays and Ducky's sports lounge to donate $100 to Pet Pal Animal Shelter in St. Petersburg for every home run he hits this season. Longoria has raised $20,000 for Pet Pal over the past two seasons. … OF Brandon Guyer made his first start of the season. … X-rays on Texas LHP Joe Saunders, who left in the fourth after a Longoria liner struck his left ankle, were negative.

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