Thursday, May 24, 2018
Tampa Bay Rays

Rays: Clean-shaven Roberts confuses daughter

Rays vs. Tigers

When/where: 1:40 today; Tropicana Field

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

Tickets: $14-210, available at Tropicana Field box office, Ticketmaster, raysbaseball.com, team Tampa store; $3 surcharge within 5 hours of game time.

Promotion: Matt Joyce race car to kids 14 and younger; historic moment canvas with Tampa Bay Times ticket tandem.

Probable pitchers:

Rays: RH Jeremy Hellickson (6-3, 5.11)

Tigers: RH Rick Porcello (4-5, 5.27)

On Hellickson: Has won two straight and four of five with a chance to tie team record today with five wins in a month. Has a 1.96 ERA in four starts vs. Tigers but a 1-3 record, last facing them June 30, 2012.

On Porcello: Roughed up in his past two starts, by Orioles and Angels, allowing 13 earned runs and 19 hits in 101/3 innings. Is 2-1 in four starts against the Rays with a 2.33 ERA that is his best vs. any team he faced at least thrice.

Key matchups

Rays vs. Porcello

Desmond Jennings 3-for-7

Matt Joyce 1-for-5

Ben Zobrist 1-for-6

Tigers vs. Hellickson

Miguel Cabrera 3-for-8

Torii Hunter 1-for-7

Austin Jackson 4-for-11, HR

On deck

Monday: at Astros, 8:10, Sun Sports. Rays — LH Matt Moore (10-3, 3.95); Astros — LH Dallas Keuchel (4-4, 4.34)

Tuesday: at Astros, 8:10, Sun Sports. Rays — LH David Price (1-4, 5.24); Astros — LH Erik Bedard (3-3, 4.44)

Wednesday: at Astros, 8:10, Sun Sports. Rays — RH Roberto Hernandez (4-9, 4.98); Astros — RH Bud Norris (5-7, 3.35)

Marc Topkin, Times staff writer

Face time

Getting sent down to Triple A was an adjustment in several ways for INF Ryan Roberts, including shaving his beard to comply with team rules. "I probably stood in front of the mirror and stared at myself for a good 30-45 seconds," Roberts said after rejoining the Rays on Saturday. "I hadn't seen my cheeks or my chin in about seven years. So it was definitely eye-opening to me. … It's funny. I Skyped with my (nearly 4-year-old) daughter, and she wouldn't even look at the phone. She kept saying, 'Where's daddy's beard?' "

Stat of the day

0-for-32

Ex-Ray Stephen Vogt's career batting line until a homer Friday night for Oakland.



Dressed to thrill

There should be some interesting outfits today as the Rays head out for what manager Joe Maddon deemed the "Accidental Preppie" road trip. "I was going to go with 'Accidental Tourist,' looking for like total dissonance in dress and just have nothing match whatsoever," he said. "(But) Houston's got a preppie flare to it a little bit, so I went with 'Accidental Preppie.' I'm really hoping for things that don't match. Even if they want to wear some knee socks, it'd be kind of cool." Maddon is also encouraging the players to wear shorts to and from the stadium due to the heat.

Comments
Rays journal: Blake Snell, flying Denard Span finally solve Red Sox

Rays journal: Blake Snell, flying Denard Span finally solve Red Sox

ST. PETERSBURG — Having lost two straight and nine of 12 times overall to the Red Sox, the Rays needed two things to go right Thursday:First, a strong start from Blake Snell.Second, some early runs against Rick Porcello from an offense that had...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Marc Topkin’s takeaways from Thursday’s Rays-Red Sox game

Marc Topkin’s takeaways from Thursday’s Rays-Red Sox game

Home cooking clearly agrees with OF Denard Span. The 34-year-old Tampa product continues to deliver, producing at the plate, running the bases, making diving catches in the outfield, and Thursday, even going over the short sidewall twice in hot pursu...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Rays once again will ‘open’ with relievers this weekend

Rays once again will ‘open’ with relievers this weekend

ST. PETERSBURG — The Rays weren't kidding about being serious that starting relievers gives them the best chance to win.So much so, they plan to do so again this weekend against the Orioles — in all three games. The plan is for Sergio Rom...
Updated: 3 hours ago
Rays tripling down on starting relievers vs. Orioles this weekend: Romo, Stanek, Romo

Rays tripling down on starting relievers vs. Orioles this weekend: Romo, Stanek, Romo

The Rays aren't kidding about being serious in using relievers to start games.After unveiling the strategy last weekend against the Angels, manager Kevin Cash said they planned to use it again, and he made that official on Thursday, naming Sergio Rom...
Updated: 9 hours ago
For starters: Rays vs. Red Sox, with Snell on the mound

For starters: Rays vs. Red Sox, with Snell on the mound

Having lost a pair of close games, the Rays will try again tonight to beat the Red Sox, and will have LHP Blake Snell on the mound.SS Willy Adames is in the lineup for the Rays for the third and what is expected to be the final time before being sent...
Updated: 11 hours ago
Rays morning after: Chris Archer, David Price sure matched up like they meant it

Rays morning after: Chris Archer, David Price sure matched up like they meant it

For two guys who said they didn't make much of matching up, they sure dueled like they did in Boston's 4-1 victory that was decided after they left.Chris Archer, the Rays current top starter, worked six impressive innings, allowing one run and four h...
Published: 05/24/18
Rays journal: Could Sergio Romo be looking at pitching 3 straight games?

Rays journal: Could Sergio Romo be looking at pitching 3 straight games?

ST. PETERSBURG — The Rays' pitching rotation for the weekend series against the Orioles could have a familiar look: Romo, Romo, Romo.Manager Kevin Cash said using veteran right-handed reliever Sergio Romo as the "opener" in all three upcoming g...
Published: 05/24/18
Rookie’s error in 9th helps doom Rays against Red Sox

Rookie’s error in 9th helps doom Rays against Red Sox

ST. PETERSBURG — Willy Adames was so excited to be in the big leagues, even if was for just a three-day cameo callup. So thrilled to make a smashing debut with a homer on Tuesday. So proud to have his parents and sister fly in from the Dom...
Published: 05/24/18
Marc Topkin’s takeaways from Wednesday’s Rays-Red Sox game

Marc Topkin’s takeaways from Wednesday’s Rays-Red Sox game

In a way, the timing of RHP Jake Faria's oblique injury seemed manageable in that RHP Nathan Eovaldi is close to coming off the disabled list and can step in. But on the other hand, the Rays finally could have four regular starters. Imagine that.Ther...
Published: 05/23/18
Rays’ Jake Faria may be out until August, Vidal Nuno called up

Rays’ Jake Faria may be out until August, Vidal Nuno called up

UPDATE, 5:32: Faria is looking at at extended absence, potentially into August. Cash said an estimate of 6-8 weeks was on the optimistic side. "From what we found out he got it pretty good," Cash said.  "So it could be a little bit longer than t...
Published: 05/23/18