Friday, December 15, 2017
Tampa Bay Rays

Mets may take shot at appealing play that gave Tampa Bay Rays their only hit

ST. PETERSBURG — As dominant as Mets knuckleballer R.A. Dickey was in Wednesday's 9-1 win against the Rays, the lingering question after the game was whether his one-hit, 12-strikeout gem should have actually been a no-hitter.

The only Rays play ruled a hit came in the first inning, when B.J. Upton hit a chopper to third base and David Wright, recognizing Upton's speed, tried to barehand the ball and had it bounce off his hand. For a franchise that just had its first-ever no-hitter from Johan Santana last week, the Mets were one official scoring ruling away from another.

"We said in the ninth inning, we've got to appeal that play," Mets manager Terry Collins said after the game. "We're probably not going to win it, but … what the heck? What do you have to lose, except somebody say no?"

The scoring decision suggests that a reasonable defensive play wouldn't have gotten Upton at first, and Wright — who had a throwing error in the ninth for the Rays' only other baserunner and their run — said he didn't know how the play should be scored.

"I tried to make the play. I didn't make it. It's as simple as that," he said. "I don't think I could have got him with the glove. I tried to barehand it. It skipped on me. If they want to go back and give me an error, they can do that. There's a handful of guys on that team that you'd have to barehand and rush it."

Rays manager Joe Maddon said he thought the ruling was correct, a reflection of Upton's speed, rather than whether Wright could get a hand on the ball to attempt a throw.

"I thought it was a hit," Maddon said. "Of course, you think you're going to get more at that point, but I thought it was. A combination of speed and how the ball was hit, just kind of bouncing away from David."

Dickey broke a 39-year-old Mets record for consecutive scoreless innings — 312/3, by Jerry Koosman in 1973 — and said he didn't have high hopes for picking up a no-hitter after the fact from any kind of appeal.

"A Hail Mary is a good analogy," he said. "It's up to them. B.J.'s quick, and I've seen David make that play a lot of times with his bare hand. You give him 10 times, he's going to make it eight. It just kicked off his palm a little bit."

INJURY UPDATE: Wednesday marked the seventh consecutive Rays game without Luke Scott in the starting lineup. Maddon shed some light on Scott's recent absence, saying he has been sidelined by a stiff back since a pinch-hitting appearance Friday.

"His back is a little stiff. He's day to day," Maddon said. "He feels better (Wednesday) than he did (Tuesday), but he's not 100 percent."

Scott reached base in his only appearance Friday and stole a base, woke up the next morning with stiffness and hasn't played since. Still the Rays' leader with 35 RBIs, Scott is hitless in his past 15 at-bats, dropping his average to .220, including .155 against left-handed pitchers.

One day after giving OF/DH Hideki Matsui the start on his 38th birthday, Maddon had him hitting fifth in the batting order Wednesday, joking that he "recently found out that in Japan they celebrate birthdays for 48 hours."

The Rays went without Ben Zobrist for the second day in a row, but Maddon said Wednesday's scratch wasn't related to the hand injury that sidelined him Tuesday, but rather that he was simply sick and could be back today.

"He's ill. He's not feeling well," Maddon said. "A little fever in the morning, and he's getting better, but he's still under the weather a bit. … The hand is still sore, but it's not the issue. The issue is the fact that he's not well."

Comments
No big deal for Rays at winter meetings, but it’s still coming

No big deal for Rays at winter meetings, but it’s still coming

LAKE BUENA VISTA — Here’s the one thing we definitely know:Rays officials headed home from the winter meetings and back across I-4 Thursday without making deals to trade any of their bigger-name, higher-paid players. Not closer Alex Colome, not third...
Updated: 4 hours ago
Are Tampa Bay Rays going to make a major deal involving Alex Colome, others? Well …

Are Tampa Bay Rays going to make a major deal involving Alex Colome, others? Well …

UPDATE, 4:02: It doesn't sound like the Rays and Cardinals will be making a deal today, Derrick Goold writing for the St. Louis Post Dispatch that Cardinals execs "leave the Walt Disney Dolphin resort with good feel for what Tampa Bay would be willin...
Updated: 5 hours ago
Rays re-sign pitcher Jonny Venters, among 13 invited to spring training

Rays re-sign pitcher Jonny Venters, among 13 invited to spring training

LAKE BUENA VISTA — LHP Jonny Venters got as far as Triple A in September. Now the former All-Star is positioned to make it all the way back to the majors for the first time since 2012, re-signing with the Rays and headlining Thursday’s announcement o...
Updated: 5 hours ago
Veteran Jonny Venters, prospect Joe McCarthy among 13 Tampa Bay Rays spring invitees

Veteran Jonny Venters, prospect Joe McCarthy among 13 Tampa Bay Rays spring invitees

Inspiring veteran LHP Jonny Venters and intriguing prospect 1B/OF Joe McCarthy are among 13 players invited to major-league spring training camp with the Rays.Others coming as a result of signing minor-league contracts with invites are: RHP R.J. Alan...
Updated: 5 hours ago
Tampa Bay Rays lose RHP Burch Smith in Rule 5 draft, keep Nick Ciuffo

Tampa Bay Rays lose RHP Burch Smith in Rule 5 draft, keep Nick Ciuffo

The Rays lost RHP Burch Smith in Thursday's Rule 5 draft but were happy to see him get an opportunity in Kansas City.They also were pleased to hang on to C Nick Ciuffo, who was left exposed but not selected.Smith, 27, was acquired from the Padres as ...
Updated: 9 hours ago
Live from Disney: Winter meetings update, day 4

Live from Disney: Winter meetings update, day 4

UPDATE, 11:09: RHP Steve Cishek, who was a very effective addition to the Rays pen last season, has reunited with pitching coach Jim Hickey, agreeing to a deal with the Cubs.UPDATE, 10:40: Like most teams, Rays officials are heading out of the meetin...
Updated: 9 hours ago
Disney-Fox deal gives ESPN control of local cable rights to Rays, Lightning games

Disney-Fox deal gives ESPN control of local cable rights to Rays, Lightning games

As part of its deal to buy a massive package of 21st Century Fox assets, Disney will acquire Fox Sports Regional Networks, which control the local cable rights to a slew of professional teams, including the Tampa Bay Rays and Tampa Bay Lightning.Assu...
Published: 12/14/17
Tampa Bay Rays making progress in trade talks

Tampa Bay Rays making progress in trade talks

Without getting into specifics – especially the who and the where – Rays officials are for the first time talking optimistically about making a trade before the winter meetings end Thursday.Speaking at around 5:15, senior VP Chaim Bloom s...
Published: 12/13/17

Winter meetings journal: Rays trade for money to sign top international free agent

LAKE BUENA VISTA — While most of the business conducted at the meetings impacts the big-league team one way or another, the Rays are working to finalize a move they hope pays off big sometime in the 2020s.In trading Wednesday to acquire $1 million in...
Published: 12/13/17
Live from Disney: Winter meetings update, day 3 – updated with news

Live from Disney: Winter meetings update, day 3 – updated with news

UPDATE, 5:55: Trade talks apparently picked up this afternoon, perhaps related to previous activity by other teams, and for first time Rays officials sound like something could happen tonight."At this point today, some of those conversations are movi...
Published: 12/13/17