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)

Maddon eager for full squad

Eric Soriano of Land O’Lakes holds his 4-year-old son, Logan, to get an autograph from Rays infielder Cole Figueroa during the Rays FanFest, attended by an estimated 25,000 people.


Eric Soriano of Land O’Lakes holds his 4-year-old son, Logan, to get an autograph from Rays infielder Cole Figueroa during the Rays FanFest, attended by an estimated 25,000 people.

PORT CHARLOTTE — The temperatures are expected to be chilly but the greetings warm this morning when the Rays hold their first full-squad workout.

"It's always great to get everybody out there," manager Joe Maddon said. "There's a lot of new faces, a lot of different things going on."

Maddon said he was pleased with the first four days of pitcher/catcher workouts, noticing — after a prompt from LHP David Price — the benefit of having the same group of catchers as last spring given the emphasis the Rays put on communication.

"You have the same catchers talking to a lot of the same pitchers, which makes it somewhat easier," he said. "They've been through this over the last year. So that's kind of different for us."

As part of his welcoming greeting, Maddon will stress the Rays' plans for a slow pace given the additional week of camp as a result of the World Baseball Classic.

"With the extra time, just build into it," he said. "Don't try to go nuts too soon."

Maddon said he expected all 65 players to be on hand. The only three who didn't report early were SS Yunel Escobar, minor-league INF Hak-Ju Lee and DH Luke Scott.

BOSS TALK: Asked on 620-AM radio during Saturday's FanFest how the stadium stalemate ends, principal owner Stuart Sternberg said: "We're staying in Tampa Bay. We're not going anywhere. I've always been clear about that, I want to remain clear about that. We'll figure out a way to get something done."

Sternberg also said Price "has got at least three more seasons with us" and they'd be open to a contract extension but it "has got to be something that works for both sides"; that whether prospect OF Wil Myers opens the season in the majors is up to executive VP Andrew Friedman; and that season ticket sales are about the same as last year.

CHECKING IN: RHP Dane De La Rosa said he was glad to finally be in camp after spending five days in limbo between being designated for assignment and outrighted to Triple-A Durham after clearing waivers, then delayed a few more days to get shipping of his car rescheduled.

De La Rosa said he wasn't that surprised to be dropped from the 40-man roster and "didn't take it personally at all." The worst part of the experience, he said, was waiting at home in California: "That's the hardest thing when you know everyone else is there already."

1B/OF Shelley Duncan also reported, saying he was excited to join the Rays (on a minor-league deal) and didn't make much of his villainous role on the Yankees side of the now infamous 2008 spring dust-up. "I didn't know what anyone thought of it," he said.

PRICE IS RIGHT: Price is hosting a second Bowl For Kids' Sake fundraiser for Big Brothers Big Sisters, the group that provides adult mentors to Tampa Bay area children facing adversity. The top 30 fundraisers (with a minimum of $1,000 in donations) are eligible to attend Price's VIP bowling party on March 29. To join, see the or call Amy Hollington at 813-769-3636.

MISCELLANY: RHP Joel Peralta's stiff neck improved enough for him to play long toss, and he could throw his first bullpen today. He still had not spoken with Dominican officials to make official his withdrawal from the WBC. … There were the usual big crowds for the free FanFest at the Trop.

Maddon eager for full squad 02/16/13 [Last modified: Saturday, February 16, 2013 10:05pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Rays journal: Erasmo Ramirez ready to start a day after closing game

    The Heater

    MINNEAPOLIS — RHP Erasmo Ramirez was on the mound to finish Sunday's 15-inning marathon win over the Twins and will start tonight's game against the Rangers.

    The Rays’ Erasmo Ramirez throws 12 pitches in the 15th inning against the Twins to earn the save then says after the game that he’s ready to make his scheduled start against the Rangers: “My arm feels good.”
  2. Rays exhausted but happy after 15-inning win over Twins (w/video)

    The Heater

    MINNEAPOLIS — Before the Rays eventually won Sunday's 6½-hour, 15-inning marathon against the Twins 8-6, they did plenty to lose it. And we need to get that out of the way first.

    The Rays’ Evan Longoria enjoys a laugh after scoring, barely, to tie it in the ninth on Steven Souza Jr.’s two-out single.
  3. Tom Jones' Two Cents: ABC's Indy 500 coverage is stellar again

    TV and Radio

    Times columnist Tom Jones looks back at the best and worst from a weekend of televised sports.

    Best coverage

    Takuma Sato left, celebrates after winning the Indianapolis 500 as Helio Castroneves is a little late passing him. ABC’s coverage of the race is stellar throughout, with plenty of extras but no fake drama.
  4. Takuma Sato surprise winner of wreck-filled Indy 500

    Auto racing

    INDIANAPOLIS — Takuma Sato, a journeyman driver, became the first Japanese winner of the Indianapolis 500 on Sunday when he held off three-time champion Helio Castroneves in a 230-mph wheel-rubbing duel to the finish.

    Scott Dixon’s car goes over the top of Jay Howard, soaring so high that Helio Castroneves drove under it while it was airborne. Stunningly, there were no serious injuries.
  5. Marc Topkin's takeaways from Sunday's Rays-Twins game

    The Heater

    The Rays won because they got two innings of good relief from each of the two pitchers who contributed to them losing Saturday's game, Danny Farquhar (who again struck out Miguel Sano) and Tommy Hunter, who both posted zeroes.