Make us your home page

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 returns to old workout plan

Matt Moore spent three months in Tempe, Ariz., working five days a week to improve his overall strength and conditioning.


Matt Moore spent three months in Tempe, Ariz., working five days a week to improve his overall strength and conditioning.

PORT CHARLOTTE — LHP Matt Moore returned to his old offseason workout regimen in hopes of regaining a few miles per hour on his fastball.

Moore spent three months in Tempe, Ariz., working five days a week with trainer Keith Wilson at his Pro Advantage facility to improve his overall strength and conditioning as well as body stability and awareness.

After doing so prior to the 2010-12 seasons, Moore spent the winter before last season in the bay area doing what he thought were similar workouts, but he said he noticed the difference as soon as he got to spring training.

"I definitely didn't feel like the ball was popping out of my hand quite like it needed to be," Moore said. "It kind of felt like I was not behind schedule, but still getting ready for the season. Usually in spring training I was always trying to make a team — I show up to camp, I'm ready to go."

It was obvious last spring he wasn't, as his lack of velocity and sharpness was a steady subject of discussion. And even though Moore went 17-4, 3.29 last season and made the All-Star team, his velocity was down an average of 2 mph from 2012 (from 94.5 to 92.4, per, and he had an elbow injury that forced him to the DL.

He knew he had to go back to what worked better, and the good feeling he had Sunday after throwing his first bullpen session validated that decision, leaving him confident he will throw harder and stay healthy.

"For me, it was a no-brainer to get back out there," Moore said. "The season before I probably topped out at 97 or 98 (mph), last year I probably topped out at 95-96. It's not necessarily top-end speed, it's where I'm sitting at and the effort. I feel like (last year), my effort level was just too high. I didn't come in at that above-level place where pitching is going to feel easy, and that's where I think I feel right now."

PITCHING IN: The 30 healthy pitchers in camp all threw bullpen sessions during the first two days, and manager Joe Maddon said he was impressed overall, as well as with the catchers.

Two nonroster pitchers he noticed Sunday were RHP Steve Geltz, an effective middle reliever at Triple-A Durham last year, and RHP Matt Andriese, a starter acquired from San Diego.

Maddon said the focus this early is still more on communication — "to get your message out" — than performance, and he wants players to take things slowly.

"It's about observation, not evaluation right now," he said.

BOUNCE BACK: INF Hak-Ju Lee said his recovery from surgery to repair an April left knee injury is going well, as he is running, hitting and taking ground balls. "I feel good," Lee said, hopeful though not sure he will be ready for the start of the Triple-A season. "I'm going to try to push myself."

MISCELLANY: Free agent Cuban RHP Odrisamer Despaigne threw for officials from the Rays and other teams Sunday. He had a similar showcase last week in Arizona. … RHPs Juan Carlos Oviedo and Juan Sandoval remained absent, delayed in their native Dominican Republic due to visa issues, possibly until late this week.

Rays' Matt Moore returns to old workout plan 02/16/14 [Last modified: Monday, February 17, 2014 8:56am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Tampa lands Super Bowl in 2021


    Tampa's Super again. Or at least it will be soon.

    Mike Tomlin celebrates with LaMarr Woodley and Troy Polamalu after the Steelers beat the Cardinals in 

Super Bowl XLIII  on February 1, 2009 at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa. [Times files (2009)
  2. Why Ryan Fitzpatrick may solve the puzzle for Bucs at backup quarterback


    Ryan Fitzpatrick will have to leave One Buc Place following Thursday’s off-season workout and fly home to New Jersey in time to teach a class of 10 second and third grade students how to solve the Rubiks Cube.

    The Bucs are hoping Ryan Fitzpatrick can provide the solution to their puzzle at backup quarterback behind starter Jameis Winston.
  3. For starters: Rays vs. Angels, with Cobb leading the way


    Rays veteran RHP Alex Cobb had a lot to say Monday about the team needing to focus on getting past .500 and building a winning record.

    And after the disappointing 3-2 loss that …

    Alex Cobb will start tonight when the Rays play the Angels.
  4. Family a driving force for University of Tampa pitcher David Lebron


    TAMPA — For University of Tampa junior pitcher David Lebron, baseball reminds him of family. He uses it to help honor the memory of his father, who taught him the game. One day, he hopes his career can help support his mother and allow her to rest.

    University of Tampa junior pitcher David Lebron (Courtesy of University of Tampa)
  5. L.A. delay could re-open Super Bowl chance for Tampa in 2021


    Construction delays on the NFL's new stadium in Los Angeles mean the Rams and Chargers won't be playing there until 2020, a year later than expected, and the ripple effect could give Tampa another …

    Tampa and Raymond James Stadium last hosted a Super Bowl in 2009, when the Pittsburgh Steelers edged the Arizona Cardinals.