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' Matt Moore encouraged by mechanical tweak

ST. PETERSBURG — LHP Matt Moore makes his first start tonight hoping a little spring change in his mechanics makes a big difference during the season.

Moore cut down on how much he rotates his body away from home before delivery, allowing him to keep his head — and arm — more in line with the catcher.

"A little more of a simplistic approach will help me as far as what I do down the hill and (my) release point," Moore said.

Tonight's game comes after what Moore called an "eventful" spring in which he struggled at times with command — allowing 20 hits and 15 walks while striking out 18 and throwing six wild pitches in 171/3 innings — and was hit in the face by a line drive, though escaping with only a bruised and cut lip.

"Kind of a little bit of everything," Moore said. "Heading into the season I think we got what we needed to out of the spring, and I feel like I'm in a really good place."

Moore said he started making a bigger twist in his delivery in the middle of last season because it improved his changeup, but he didn't feel as comfortable this spring and went back to basics.

DEJESUS DOWN: OF David DeJesus right foot, bruised by a pitch in the eighth inning Monday, was sore and swollen Tuesday and kept him out of action.

Matt Joyce moved to left and the leadoff spot, and with no left-handers on their four-man bench, the Rays used righty Logan Forsythe as the DH against Toronto RHP Drew Hutchison.

"We had really no other options at that point," manager Joe Maddon said. "Not enough left-handed bats to balance it out."

DeJesus wouldn't have started tonight against LHP Mark Buehrle anyway, but Maddon said he may be available to pinch-hit.

REPLAY IN ACTION: Instant replay was used twice. Once when it didn't seem necessary, at the umpires' discretion on a long foul ball by Toronto's Colby Rasmus in the seventh inning that after more than 31/2 minutes was confirmed as foul. And once in the ninth on a challenge by Jays manager John Gibbons that after 1:20 was confirmed as an out at first after a dazzling play by Evan Longoria and James Loney. Maddon earlier again considered a challenge on a play at second but after a sign from bench coach Dave Martinez ("a sad face,'' Maddon joked), he declined to pursue it.

Overall, Maddon said the process worked. "All protocol was attended to,'' he said. "The umpires did everything right.'' MINOR MATTERS: The Rays set their rotation at Triple-A Durham, with RH Nathan Karns starting the Thursday opener, followed by LH Enny Romero, RH Matt Andriese, LH Mike Montgomery and LH Erik Bedard. Opening starters for the other affiliates: Double-A Montgomery, RH Victor Mateo; advanced Class A Charlotte, RH Roberto Gomez; Class A Bowling Green, RH Jacob Faria.

MISCELLANY: C Chris Gimenez was designated for assignment by Texas, and if he clears waivers expect the Rays to push to sign him for depth at Durham. … CF Desmond Jennings will bat leadoff tonight vs. Buehrle and Forsythe and Sean Rodriguez will play, with Maddon deciding between sitting Matt Joyce (hitting .800) and Loney. … Tuesday was the official release date for Double Play, the co-autobiography by 2B Ben Zobrist and wife Julianna, available online and in stores. … LHP David Price raised $54,000 for Big Brothers Big Sisters with his third Bowl for Kids' Sake event Saturday, $124,000 over three years.

Surgery for Zimmer

Senior adviser Don Zimmer is expected to have a procedure to repair a heart valve this month, son Tom Zimmer said.

Zimmer, 83, has been having a number of health issues, including shortness of breath, and gets tired very easily, limiting his mobility, Tom said. Zimmer was wearing tubes for oxygen during his appearance at Monday's season opener while riding in a golf cart and looked somewhat uncomfortable.

Marc Topkin, Times staff writer

Rays' Matt Moore encouraged by mechanical tweak 04/01/14 [Last modified: Wednesday, April 2, 2014 12:29am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. U.S. repeats as Solheim Cup champion

    Golf

    WEST DES MOINES, Iowa — Lexi Thompson set the tone by rallying from four holes down. The rest of the Americans took it from there and restored their dominance in the Solheim Cup

    Lexi Thompson, left, comes back from four holes down to halve the day’s first singles match with Europe’s Anna Nordqvist to set the tone for the United States.
  2. Rays see the Blake Snell they've been waiting for in win over Mariners

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — It was a one-run game Sunday when the Mariners' Robinson Cano singled with one out in the seventh inning, bringing the dangerous Nelson Cruz to the plate.

    Tampa Bay Rays starting pitcher Blake Snell (4) throwing in the third inning of the game between the Seattle Mariners and the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla. on Sunday, Aug. 20, 2017.
  3. Bucs journal: Demar Dotson (mild groin strain) expected back for opener

    Bucs

    TAMPA — The Bucs got good news Sunday on starting right tackle Demar Dotson, whose MRI exam showed only a mild right groin sprain and who should be back at practice next week.

    Tackle Demar Dotson has only a mild groin strain.
  4. Bucs counting on better health creating better pass rush

    Bucs

    TAMPA — Ask Bucs coaches about the improved depth and health of their defensive line, and they'll look around for a piece of wood to knock on.

    Retired All-Pro defensive end  Simeon Rice, right, the last Buc to have double-digit sacks in a season,  works with defensive end Ryan Russell, who last season was promoted from the practice squad for the second half of the year as injuries piled up. He is competing for a backup job this year.
  5. Rays journal: Jake Faria heads to DL with left abdominal strain

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — RHP Jacob Faria made the trek he didn't want to take after his last start. It was to the trainer's room. The pain in his left abdominal went from nagging to an issue during his start that night in Toronto.

    Tampa Bay Rays starting pitcher Jacob Faria (34) throwing in the first inning of the game between the Milwaukee Brewers and the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla. on Friday, August 4, 2017.