Make us your home page

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Rays Notebook

Iwamura, Bartlett absences may not overlap

MIAMI — INF Ben Zobrist arrived Tuesday. SS Jason Bartlett is leaving this morning. 2B Akinori Iwamura might not be going anywhere until Friday.

The fluid situation that is the middle of the Rays infield actually could work out pretty well, given the possibilities for significant disruption.

And as much as the suspensions stemming from the brawl June 5 in Boston have caused problems, the Rays may have caught a break Tuesday.

Iwamura's hearing on the appeal of his three-game ban was delayed, due to a scheduling problem, from Tuesday afternoon until noon today. With MLB disciplinarian Bob Watson expected to take a day or two to make a decision, and with the Rays playing a 12:10 p.m. game Thursday, Iwamura likely wouldn't have to sit out until Friday.

Bartlett is planning to rejoin the team by then, assuming there are no complications with the birth of his first child. His wife, Kelly, is having labor induced this morning in St. Petersburg, and Bartlett is booked on an early morning flight and headed straight to the hospital.

There could be more good news as Iwamura, and interpreter Bori Uchibori, will press to have his suspension shortened. "You have to have a reason to appeal, and hopefully we're going to get it reduced," manager Joe Maddon said.

BABY BOOM: Bartlett, who had Uchibori monitoring his cell phone during Tuesday's game, said he was excited and nervous about the impending birth. "I'm sure (this) morning it'll be even more," he said. "She's nervous, she's calling me, and asking all her friends what to expect, so she's feeling it."

BEN'S BACK: Zobrist played only two games in the field (and one at DH) after spending two weeks on the DL at Triple-A Durham with a shoulder strain, but he and Rays officials are convinced he can handle the back-to-back games at shortstop. "I feel good, I feel like my timing's pretty good even though I haven't swung a whole lot, my shoulder's feeling pretty good," Zobrist said.

PERCY MERCY: RHP Troy Percivcal, now ninth all-time with 342 saves, said the left hamstring strain that forced him to the DL is still an issue and the reason he has had control problems. "My leg is still a little bit weak … so I end up changing my mechanics a little bit but it's nothing I can't deal with,'' he said. "I've just got to find a better way (with my delivery). I've had a few days where I've thrown the ball really good; today I just did not throw the ball well. But in the job that I do, the only thing that matters is that at the end of the game we win.''

McGEE SIDELINED: LHP Jake McGee, one of the Rays' top prospects, was placed on the Double-A Montgomery DL with a left elbow strain.

REHAB REPORT: 1B Carlos Pena was to go through a full pregame workout, and Maddon said "it's possible" he'll return this weekend. … OF Rocco Baldelli did not pinch-hit as planned for Class A Vero due to a mixup on the lineup card. He's scheduled to DH today in a noon game at Clearwater. … RHP Al Reyes, on the DL with right shoulder tendinitis, has started playing catch and feeling better.

MISCELLANY: J.P. Howell picked up his sixth win, most among AL relievers. … Iwamura's homer was the 200th of his professional career, 12th in the majors. … Fort Lauderdale product C Shawn Riggans left tickets for 42 friends and relatives, then joked: "I told them I'd take care of one night; they're on their own (tonight)." … LHP Scott Kazmir's reason for leaving after Sunday's game without talking to reporters: "I was just frustrated with my performance." … Fresno State product RHP Matt Garza said he made good-luck calls to some team members before the final round of the College World Series.

Iwamura, Bartlett absences may not overlap 06/24/08 [Last modified: Thursday, June 26, 2008 6:45am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Bucs journal: Kicker Nick Folk has up and downs against Jaguars


    JACKSONVILLE — If the Bucs had hoped for a drama-free night in their kicking game, they'll have to wait another week.

    Bucs kicker Nick Folk celebrates one of his two made field goals against the Jaguars, but he also misses a field goal and has an extra point blocked.
  2. Bucs top Jaguars behind strong first half



    There is a reason why the air in Tampa Bay is filled with playoff talk. If Thursday night's 12-8 Bucs preseason win over the Jaguars is any indication, it's also going to be filled with footballs thrown by quarterback Jameis Winston.

    Doug Martin gets the Bucs’ only touchdown  on a 2-yard run, squeaking past linebacker Telvin Smith in the first quarter. He has five carries for 30 yards.
  3. Rays journal: Archer has strong outing, with two mistakes

    The Heater

    TORONTO — Two pitches RHP Chris Archer didn't execute are the ones that stood out Thursday as Josh Donaldson hit them out of the park. But the two solo home runs aside, Archer turned in a sterling outing that went atop the pile of good pitching the Rays keep wasting.

    Rays starting pitcher Chris Archer (22) works during the first inning. [Nathan Denette/The Canadian Press via AP]
  4. Tim Tebow continues wowing fans as he wraps up bay area games


    CLEARWATER — Tracey Fritzinger has seen Tim Tebow play baseball a few times this year. The 40-year-old St. Petersburg resident went to two of his games against the Tampa Yankees, along with Joy, her little sister from Big Brothers Big Sisters of America.

    St. Lucie Mets outfielder Tim Tebow, middle, hangs out in the dugout during Thursday night’s game against the Clearwater Threshers at Spectrum Field, the last of St. Lucie’s eight-day trip to the Tampa Bay area.
  5. Rays vs. Mariners, 7:10 Friday, Tropicana Field

    The Heater

    Tonight: vs. Mariners

    7:10, Tropicana Field

    TV/radio: Fox Sports Sun, 620-AM, 680-AM (Spanish)

    Tampa Bay Rays relief pitcher Austin Pruitt (50) in the dugout during the ninth inning of the game between the New York Yankees and the Tampa Bay Rays on Opening Day at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla. on Sunday, April 2, 2017. The Tampa Bay Rays beat the New York Yankees 7-3.