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Playing with Rays big-leaguers like fairy tale for Ciuffo

Quote of the day

"I call those The Doors to Narnia. When you cross those doors, you go into Narnia, you go into a fairy-tale land because of how nice it is over here."

Minor-league C Nick Ciuffo, on getting to come over to the major-league clubhouse to work out for a few days with the Rays.

Art of the deal

The painting the Rays gave CF Kevin Kiermaier on Friday of his homer-robbing catch last season was done by Sarasota-based artist John Reynolds. RHP Chris Archer found out about him because Reynolds' wife is a Rays fan active on Twitter. "He's done two other paintings for me, and I just love the quality, they look so good," Archer said.

Number of the day

49 Spring training camps for Rays minor-league field coordinator Jim Hoff.

The dish

Today's full-squad workout starts at 9:30 a.m. at the Charlotte Sports Park (2300 El Jobean Road) and will last about 2½ hours. Admission and parking are free. Driving time from the bay area is 1½-2 hours. Suggested route: Interstate 75 south to Toledo Blade Road. Go west 6½ miles to El Jobean Road (SR 776). Go right 2 miles. Stadium complex is on left. Information: (941) 235-5025.

Heads-up

The fundamental focus is on pickoffs and rundowns, which usually makes for some decent entertainment. Pitchers throwing live batting practice, starting around 10:55, include RHP Erasmo Ramirez and top prospect LHP Blake Snell.

Exhibition schedule

Rays tickets: Range from $10-29, available at raysbaseball.com, calling toll-free 1-888-326-7297 (FAN-RAYS) and at CSP or Tropicana Field box offices, team Tampa Store (400 N Tampa St.). Prices increase to $15-$32 March 12-13. All games 1:05 unless noted.

March

2 vs. Nationals

3 vs. Orioles

4 at Red Sox (Fort Myers)

5 at Orioles, 7:05 (Sarasota)

6 vs. Twins

7 at Red Sox (Fort Myers)

8 at Tigers (Lakeland)

9 vs. Blue Jays

10 vs. Pirates

11 at Pirates (Bradenton)

12 vs. Yankees

13 vs. Red Sox, at Blue Jays (Dunedin)

14 at Braves (Disney)

15 vs. Phillies

16 OFF

17 at Phillies (Clearwater)

18 vs. Red Sox

19 vs. Orioles

20 at Orioles (Sarasota)

21 TBA (Cuba?)

22 TBA (Cuba?)

23 at Twins (Fort Myers)

24 at Yankees, 6:35 (Tampa)

25 vs. Twins

26 at Pirates, 6:05 (Bradenton)

27 vs. Blue Jays

28 OFF

29 at Blue Jays (Dunedin)

30 vs. Red Sox

31 vs. Pirates

April

1 at Braves (Disney), at Tigers (Lakeland)

Marc Topkin, Times staff writer

Playing with Rays big-leaguers like fairy tale for Ciuffo 02/27/16 [Last modified: Saturday, February 27, 2016 8:59pm]
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