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)

More relaxed Kevin Cash prepares to set tone for Rays

PORT CHARLOTTE — Manager Kevin Cash admitted he was nervous last year when he gave his introductory speech before the Rays' first full-squad workout.

He spent weeks practicing — even logging rehearsals in his car — before speaking for six concise minutes to the first team he would ever manage.

When Cash addresses the full team today at the start of his second season, he probably won't be as nervous. But the message is no less important.

"It will be just a different tone," Cash said. "We don't change the way we feel about the game. We care about the same things, the same principles, but it is more comforting to be looking into a group you have relationships with rather than looking out there and not knowing a lot of the faces."

Cash declined to give a preview of his speech but said he was going over three sets of notes — two from last spring and one at the end of last year — to condense them. He already has a list of who else will be speaking to make sure he doesn't forget anyone.

"You have to," Cash said. "If you don't, you can find yourself rambling on and on."

ALL PRESENT: Nonroster INF Juniel Querecuto reported to camp Thursday, meaning all 64 players are present before today's workout.

With the full squad present for the first time, SS Brad Miller said he likes the environment and chemistry of his new team.

"I think there's a really good energy," Miller said. "I think the biggest thing is everybody seems hungry. Everybody seems excited. We had a lot of guys here early to get out here. I think that's what's exciting the most. Everybody's ready."

LIGHT DAY: In advance of the full workout, pitchers and catchers had a light day Thursday before the spring training routine kicks in. Pitchers played catch, and catchers threw to the bases, while position players didn't work out. Aside from photo day, pitchers had another key item on their agenda: a meeting with pitching coach Jim Hickey.

"It's more of a message of how we like to go about our thought process as a pitching staff," Cash said. "The goals, not statistical goals, but what we're trying to accomplish and the build-up process, things that we need to look to work on, to improve on, things that we need to maintain. It'll be a little bit of a review from last year and also going into this camp, these are some of the thought processes."

Cash said the meeting also helps foster communication between pitchers and catchers.

EASING IN: Don't expect a lot of intense action during today's full workout. Cash said position players will ease into drills, just as pitchers did, so the team won't be practicing pickoffs or run-downs immediately. "We're going to work into some things, and then we'll intensify," Cash said. The Rays plan to participate in live batting practice; RHP Chris Archer, LHP Drew Smyly and top LHP prospect Blake Snell are among the pitchers scheduled to throw.

MISCELLANY: The team will hold a special event Sunday for spring training season ticket holders. After the 9:30 a.m. workout, broadcasters Dave Wills and Andy Freed will host a Q&A with CF Kevin Kiermaier, INF Logan Forsythe, RHP Alex Cobb, RHP Danny Farquhar and C Hank Conger. … Players will have their annual meeting with the Major League Baseball Players Association after workouts today. One scheduled topic: next month's planned trip to Cuba, which has not been formally announced.

More relaxed Kevin Cash prepares to set tone for Rays 02/25/16 [Last modified: Thursday, February 25, 2016 11:48pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Chris Archer, 25,000 Cubs fans and Tampa Bay's painful truth

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — The biggest ovation inside Tropicana Field on Tuesday night was not for Cubs manager Joe Maddon, who was returning for the first time since managing the Rays.

    "W" flags fly in the stands after the game between the Chicago Cubs and the Rays Tuesday at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg. [WILL VRAGOVIC   |   Times]
  2. A rendering of the Bucs' indoor practice facility.
  3. Clemson reunion for Bucs' Adam Humphries, Vikings' Mackensie Alexander


    Bucs receiver Adam Humphries will have a familiar face lining up against him Sunday when he's in the slot and the Vikings have Mackensie Alexander guarding him as their nickel defensive back.

    Bucs wide receiver Adam Humphries (10) makes a reception before being tackled by Chicago Bears defensive back Marcus Cooper (31) Sunday at Raymond James Stadium. [LOREN ELLIOTT   |   Times]
  4. For starters: Rays vs. Cubs, trying to get even with Joe Maddon


    After a tough 2-1 loss on Tuesday, the Rays take on the Cubs again tonight, looking to split the two-game series with former manager Joe Maddon.

    The Rays are starting young lefty Blake Snell.
  5. Whatever USF has to say about Temple waits till Thursday


    "The holes were wide open. Anyone could have run through them."

    South Florida Bulls cornerback Mazzi Wilkins (23) intercepts a pass during the second half of the home opener for the South Florida Bulls against the Stony Brook Seawolves at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Fla., on Saturday, Sept. 2, 2017. LOREN ELLIOTT   |   Times