Rays: Feeling Springsteen; intro tunes; Fielder joins

Published March 8 2013
Updated March 9 2013

Familiar turf

Clubhouse attendant Brandon "Tank" Richesin rejoined the Rays after two weeks in Taiwan working for the Australian team in the World Baseball Classic. Richesin said it was a good experience overall, though he didn't experiment much with native foods: "I stayed pretty much American: McDonald's, KFC, Subway, Pizza Hut."

Best news of the day

Friday was the halfway point of the 50 days between the start of spring training and opening day.

Who is this Ray?

He was a 47th-round draft pick by the Cubs. Has been traded four times. Has a dog named Rambo. Is active in paintball.

The dish: Rays at Phillies

When/where: 1:05 today; Bright House Field, 601 N Coachman Road, Clearwater

Radio: 620-AM

Tickets: $14-$34, available through phillies.com, (215) 463-1000

Pitchers: Rays — Jeff Niemann, Jeremy Hellickson, Alex Colome; Phillies — John Lannan, Adam Morgan, Jeremy Horst, Antonio Bastardo, Jake Diekman, B.J. Rosenberg


Most regulars are off, but CF Desmond Jennings, INF/OF Sean Rodriguez, INF Ryan Roberts and prospect OF Wil Myers are scheduled to make the trip.

Marc Topkin, Times staff writer

On deck

Sunday: vs. Red Sox, 1:05. Rays — Matt Moore; Red Sox — John Lackey

Monday: vs. Twins, 7:05. Rays — Roberto Hernandez; Twins — TBA

Tuesday: vs. Yankees, 1:05. Rays — Alex Cobb; Yankees — TBA

Who is this Ray? RHP Kyle Farnsworth

Remaining exhibition games

Ticket into: Reserved seats $19-$27, berm/boardwalk $10/$12. Available through raysbaseball.com and Ticketmaster, at Tropicana Field and Charlotte Sports Park box offices, Tampa team store.

All games 1:05 unless noted


13: Off

14: at Orioles

15: vs. Phillies

16: vs. Red Sox

17: at Red Sox, 1:35

18: Off

19: at Tigers

20: at Twins, 7:05

21: vs. Jays

22: vs. Orioles, at Pirates

23: vs. Twins

24: at Yankees

25: vs. Pirates, 7:05

26: at Phillies

27: vs. Jays

28: at Orioles, 7:05

29: at Tigers

30: vs. Tigers at Trop, 1:10

A-listed B-streeters

Rays manager Joe Maddon is excited for the Sunday and Monday pregame performances of the B-Street Band, the long-running Bruce Springsteen, right, tribute group led by his childhood buddy Willie Forte. Maddon's favorites of their covers? "I like their Jungleland, and their Spirit in the Night is pretty good," he said. Though it has been suggested, Maddon will not be singing. "I can't," he said. "Plus, it's pregame, so that's another reason why I can't."

Latest legend

All-Star slugger Cecil Fielder is the newest member of the Rays' Adopt-A-Legend program. He is set to be in camp and in uniform (No. 45) Sunday-Tuesday. Manager Joe Maddon made the invitation at a game last year, remembering how well Fielder treated him as a young coach with the Angels.

Tuned up

Spring training is for experimenting in lots of ways. On Friday the Rays took the field to Bang a Gong (Get It On), which manager Joe Maddon heard on his iPad last week and wanted to try as an intro song.