Wednesday, May 23, 2018
Tampa Bay Rays

Rays' Jennings pulled with hamstring tightness

ST. PETERSBURG — CF Desmond Jennings left Sunday's game in the sixth inning with tightness in his left hamstring and had a precautionary MRI exam.

The Rays hope it's not serious. "I don't think so, but honest to God, I don't know," manager Joe Maddon said.

Maddon said they knew something was up when Jennings, who led off the sixth with a bunt single, didn't attempt to steal on any of the next five pitches from Orioles RHP Scott Feldman, who was "really slow to the plate."

"That was a huge tipoff," Maddon said.

Maddon and athletic trainer Paul Harker checked on Jennings, who was removed and replaced by pinch-runner Sam Fuld. The move paid off as Fuld was running and advanced to third on the wild pitch Feldman threw for ball four to 2B Ben Zobrist. Fuld scored on a sacrifice fly.

Jennings was having a huge series, matching his career best with three straight multi-hit games, scoring the winning run Friday and knocking in four Saturday.

"Desmond has been playing well … everything has been rolling for him," Maddon said. "Let's just hope it's very minor."

BOUNCE BACK: 3B Evan Longoria was a late scratch due to flu-like symptoms, but he entered the game in the eighth inning and said he expects to start today. Kelly Johnson started in Longoria's place at third and played well, other than an error in the fifth inning. Maddon said Longoria was sick before the game but after resting in the clubhouse told him around the fifth inning he was feeling better.

WEB GEMS: The Rays continued to play sparkling defense. In the first, SS Yunel Escobar barehanded Chris Davis’ grounder, which had bounced off the hand of LHP Enny Romero, and started an unconventional 1-6-3 double play. Zobrist, who Maddon said is playing Gold Glove-caliber second base, snagged a sinking popup by Brian Roberts to start the fifth. But the best might have been two batters later, when RF Wil Myers made a running catch a couple of steps from the wall on a Michael Morse fly ball. "Tremendous play," Maddon said. Myers said he got a good read right off the bat. "It was probably the best catch I've ever made," he said.

TROP TALK: Maddon said the Rays would have had a shutout if not for the ceiling, as the Orioles scored their only run in the ninth on Matt Wieters’ RBI double that bounced off the B-ring catwalk and caromed in play into shallow rightfield. "I was under it, had it the whole way and that happened," Myers said. "Oh well."

QUICK STINT: RHP J.D. Martin was in Louisiana on Saturday with his wife's family, ready to start his offseason, when he got called up by the Rays.

He made the three-hour drive to Houston and flew to Tampa to be available for long relief. But after not appearing in the Rays' 3-1 win, Martin will be designated for assignment today, likely to make room on the 40-man roster for RH reliever Jesse Crain (shoulder), who is expected to be activated from the disabled list.

Martin, 30, set a franchise record and led all minor-league pitchers with 16 wins at Triple-A Durham, but he hasn't appeared in a big-league game since 2010 with Washington. The Rays have 10 days to trade, release or put Martin on waivers.

MISCELLANY: RHP Fernando Rodney has converted his past six save opportunities. … C Jose Lobaton hadn't thrown out an attempted base-stealer in 22 attempts until he got CF Adam Jones at second in the third. … 1B James Loney could get a day off today against LHP Wei-Yin Chen, with Sean Rodriguez likely to fill in.

Joe Smith can be reached at [email protected]

Comments
For starters: Rays vs. Red Sox, with Archer facing Price

For starters: Rays vs. Red Sox, with Archer facing Price

The Rays are set to take on the Red Sox again tonight with a bit of a student-mentor framing as Chris Archer takes on former Tampa Bay ace David Price.The Rays announced they are putting RHP Jake Faria on the 10-day DL due to the oblique strain he su...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Rays put Jake Faria on DL, call up Vidal Nuno

Rays put Jake Faria on DL, call up Vidal Nuno

The Rays, as expected, are placing RHP Jake Faria on the 10-day DL with a left oblique strain that he sustained during Tuesday's game.Somewhat unexpectedly, they are calling up LHP Vidal Nuno to take his place.Nuno, 30, has pitched parts of five seas...
Updated: 3 hours ago
Rays morning after: Faria frustrated after latest letdown

Rays morning after: Faria frustrated after latest letdown

Whatever pain RHP Jake Faria was feeling as a result of the oblique muscle on the left side he strained throwing a fourth-inning slider to Boston's Hanley Ramirez couldn't compare to the hurt in his heart.Forced to leave Tuesday's game and likely hea...
Updated: 7 hours ago
Willy Adames homers, but Rays fall to Red Sox and suffer injuries

Willy Adames homers, but Rays fall to Red Sox and suffer injuries

ST. PETERSBURG — Top prospect Willy Adames is only going to get to stay with the Rays for a few days, so good for him for making the most of it with a home run in his first big-league game, and off Red Sox ace Chris Sale no less.But the good fe...
Updated: 10 hours ago
Marc Topkin’s takeaways from Rays loss to Red Sox

Marc Topkin’s takeaways from Rays loss to Red Sox

Marc Topkin's takeaways from Rays 4-2 loss to Red Sox on Tuesday:* The Rays record against a Red Sox team they consider a measuring stick doesn't look very good at 3-8. But, as manager Kevin Cash and several players pointed out, there is some consola...
Published: 05/22/18
Rays journal: Critics don’t faze Sergio Romo or team

Rays journal: Critics don’t faze Sergio Romo or team

ST. PETERSBURG — Criticisms of the Rays' latest innovative pitching strategy have piled up since Angels INF Zack Cosart said after Sunday's game that starting RHP Sergio Romo to get the first three-six outs was "bad for baseball.''One of the lo...
Published: 05/22/18
For starters: Rays vs. Red Sox, with Faria on the mound

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

UPDATE, 6:04: Cash said the Rays don't know yet if Wendle will be  back Thursday or Friday, though with the Sox starting RHP Rick Porcello on Thursday that would make sense. …  Cash said OF Carlos Gomez (groin strain) will run the bas...
Published: 05/22/18
Rays call up top prospect Willy Adames – but only for a couple days

Rays call up top prospect Willy Adames – but only for a couple days

The Rays have called up top prospect INF Willy Adames – though likely for a short stay.INF Joey Wendle was placed on the paternity list Tuesday, which allows him to miss up to three days.Manager Kevin Cash said Adames is headed back to Triple-A...
Published: 05/22/18
Rays journal: Christian Arroyo set to play first game at Tropicana Field

Rays journal: Christian Arroyo set to play first game at Tropicana Field

ST. PETERSBURG  — Christian Arroyo has watched more than 50 Rays games at Tropicana Field from the stands. Has been on the turf for his younger sister's gymnastics competitions and once, while it was in football configuration, to take grou...
Published: 05/21/18
There’s a swing by Rays CF Kevin Kiermaier …. and a gender reveal for November baby

There’s a swing by Rays CF Kevin Kiermaier …. and a gender reveal for November baby

Tampa Bay Rays OF Kevin Kiermaier and his wife Marisa are having a boy.Kiermaier shared the news on Twitter over the weekend in a most appropriate themed gender reveal event — taking a swing at ball that exploded with blue powder.Looks like im ...
Published: 05/21/18