Make us your home page
Instagram

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' Bourgeois excited for another shot at majors

Speedy Jason Bourgeois is wearing the No. 13 of his childhood friend, former Rays All-Star Carl Crawford. “I won’t let him down,” he says.

JAMES BORCHUCK | Times

Speedy Jason Bourgeois is wearing the No. 13 of his childhood friend, former Rays All-Star Carl Crawford. “I won’t let him down,” he says.

PHOENIX — One of the main reasons OF Jason Bourgeois signed with the Rays for this season was the urging of childhood friend Carl Crawford, the longtime Tampa Bay star who raved about the team, staff and situation and convinced Bourgeois he would fit in well.

So it was only fitting that when Bourgeois walked into the Rays clubhouse Tuesday, having been called up to replace injured CF Desmond Jennings, he saw that clubhouse manager Chris Westmoreland had assigned him Crawford's No. 13.

"It's crazy," Bourgeois said. "It's the first thing I saw when I got in here. I was like, 'Woah, I got the man's jersey!' I won't let him down."

Bourgeois, 31, has experience of playing parts of five seasons in the majors, most recently with the Royals in 2012, and was doing well at Triple-A Durham, hitting .291 with two homers, 57 RBIs, 21 steals and a .354 average with runners in scoring position.

Manager Joe Maddon said Bourgeois will be used situationally, as a pinch-hitter and pinch-runner and as part of what could be up to a five-man ensemble in centerfield, along with Sam Fuld (who started Tuesday), Sean Rodriguez, Ben Zobrist and even rookie Wil Myers, who played the final two innings there Tuesday. Bourgeois pinch-hit and went to left, where he made a leaping catch at the wall in the eighth inning.

The key, Maddon said, will be balancing their need for defense, which Fuld provides the most of, and offense. "Wide open," Maddon said. "You could see everybody probably but (catchers Jose) Molina and (Jose) Lobaton."

Similarly, Maddon said the leadoff spot will be a "revolving door" with SS Yunel Escobar (who was there Tuesday), Zobrist and OF Matt Joyce.

Bourgeois, who got the unexpected news after Monday's game in Durham, said he was thrilled just to be a part of it again. Even better is that the Rays' next stop is Dodger Stadium, where Crawford now works.

"That's crazy timing," Bourgeois said. "It'll be great to see him."

To make room on the 40-man roster for Bourgeois, the Rays moved RHP Alex Cobb (concussion) from the 15- to the 60-day disabled list, which sets Aug.  15 as the first day he can return.

As a result, Cobb, who was struck in the head by a line drive June 15, had his next rehab start pushed back a day, to Friday for Class A Charlotte, with the possibility that he could then start next for the Rays on Aug. 15.

MOORE BETTER: LHP Matt Moore had another encouraging session playing catch and said that if his elbow continues to feel as well as it has, he could be take the mound as soon as Saturday for the first of several bullpen sessions leading to his return, potentially during the Aug. 13-18 homestand.

Moore said the ball "was coming out pretty good" as he made 40-plus throws at a distance of 70 feet with teammate David Price.

"It's definitely something that over the course of the last week it's gotten considerably better every couple of days," he said. "I'm much better now than I was two days ago, and two days before that the same thing."

DESMOND DOWN: The Rays were hoping Jennings would miss only a couple days with a sprain of his left middle finger, but a further exam and additional X-rays by specialist Dr. Doug Carlan revealed a small rim fracture on the outside of his knuckle.

Maddon said they expect Jennings to miss only the two weeks or so he will be on the DL, and to return on or close to his Aug. 19 eligible date.

"It's unfortunate," Maddon said. "We're definitely going to miss him. What's going on right now, the kinds of teams we're playing, it might be nice to have his skill set."

MISCELLANY: Maddon said he was "pleased to see action being taken" against PED users and wants believe this is "the beginning of the end." … INF Ryan Roberts, a former D'back, got a nice ovation before his first at-bat. … The D'backs welcomed back and showed a video of Rays TV analyst Brian Anderson, who pitched for them.

Rays' Bourgeois excited for another shot at majors 08/06/13 [Last modified: Wednesday, August 7, 2013 12:23am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Cup-winning Lightning captain Dave Andreychuk makes Hockey Hall of Fame

    Lightning Strikes

    TAMPA — Hall of Fame coach Scotty Bowman said Dave Andreychuk's name has surfaced often the past eight years with the selection committee.

    30 Oct 2001:  Left wing Dave Andreychuk #25 of the Tampa Bay Lightning skates towards the blue line during the NHL game against the Toronto Maple Leafs at Air Canada Centre in Toronto, Canada.  The Maple Leafs defeated the Lightning 3-2.  Mandatory Credit:  Dave Sanford /Allsport
  2. Rays acquire slick-fielding shortstop Adeiny Hechavarria from Marlins

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — Chaim Bloom said the Rays weren't necessarily in the market for a shortstop. The team has a number of those. But when the Marlins recently began shopping Adeiny Hechavarria, well, that was too much to pass up.

    Adeiny Hechavarria has emerged as one of baseball’s top defensive shortstops in the past three seasons with the Marlins.
  3. Rays at Pirates, 7:05 p.m. Tuesday, Pittsburgh

    The Heater

    Tonight: at Pirates

    7:05, PNC Park

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

    Probable pitchers

    Rays: Alex Cobb (6-5, 4.05)

    PORT CHARLOTTE, FL - FEBRUARY 18:  Alex Cobb #53 of the Tampa Bay Rays poses for a portrait during the Tampa Bay Rays photo day on February 18, 2017 at Charlotte Sports Park in Port Charlotte, Floida.  (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
  4. Lightning journal: Forward Yanni Gourde agrees to two-year deal

    Lightning Strikes

    TAMPA — Just three years ago, Yanni Gourde was fighting to stay in pro hockey.

    Tampa Bay Lightning center Yanni Gourde celebrates after scoring against the Florida Panthers during the second period of an NHL hockey game, Saturday, March 11, 2017, in Tampa, Fla. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara) TPA108
  5. What they're saying about Dave Andreychuk making Hall of Fame

    Lightning Strikes

    "Dave helped me so much when I was just starting my career, a young kid that was looking to find his way as a hockey player, a person and a member of the Tampa Bay community. In addition to watching him compile such awe-inspiring statistics, I remember him as a big brother to me and many others, making sure all the …