Monday, June 18, 2018
Tampa Bay Rays

Rays' Moore awed by first All-Star experience

NEW YORK — Actually, it was the shoes.

Rays LHP Matt Moore was impressed and awed by a lot of things during the first day of his first All-Star experience, from how well he was treated to the treats in his locker, including a dark blue pair of Nike spikes with a gold hologram.

"Everybody's really happy to be here, really happy for everybody. There's just tons of excitement," Moore said. "The cleats that were sitting in my locker were the stuff you see on TV, but I had never really envisioned myself receiving these or possibly putting them on my feet one day.

"I feel more than lucky to be here, to be honest with you. It really is something that as soon as we start to suit up and get closer to game time and get on the field, it's going to hit me even more as far as what's actually going on around me. I try to be aware of my surroundings. This is definitely one of the coolest surroundings I've ever had."

Moore said he got all kinds of advice on handling the All-Star experience, from Rays first-base coach George Hendrick telling him to get all the ball- and bat-signing out of the way first to LHP David Price advising him to take his time and not rush through any of the events.

Also, fashion tips. "He also told me you don't have to wear a suit, you don't have to try to impress on your first day,'' Moore said.

AL manager Jim Leyland told the Times that Moore, who has 13 wins and will be on full rest, would be used. "That's why he's here,'' he said. There was word late Monday he is tentatively slated for the fifth and/or sixth innings.

Moore has his parents, brother, sister-in-law and girlfriend to share the experience.

MORE RAYS: The Rays are also represented by head athletic trainer Ron Porterfield, strength and conditioning coordinator Kevin Barr and assistant home clubhouse manager Jose Fernandez.

SUNSHINE BUD: Commissioner Bud Selig, speaking Monday at a Politico-sponsored event, said he remains hopeful the Rays, and Marlins, can become successful franchises.

"Tampa, we have a stadium problem there, there's no question about it. It is what it is. There's no secret. They've got a wonderful team. I think they're 2½, 3 games out this morning at the break and not drawing well. But I really think it's the stadium and its location," he said. "And then the Miami thing, we've had some things happen that need to be corrected. But I certainly haven't given up on Florida. The demographics are too good."

LOCAL YOKELS: Two players from Tampa Bay area high schools are making their first All-Star appearances as part of the NL team.

Tampa Alonso High product Jose Fernandez's selection is the latest achievement in a dizzying rookie season for the 20-year-old Marlins pitcher. "It is a dream to be an All-Star," he said. "I wasn't expecting it to be this soon, but it happened this time. I'm incredibly blessed for the chance to be here around these players, the best in the game."

Pasco High product OF Domonic Brown was rewarded for his breakout season with the Phillies, elected by the players. "That was unbelievable," he said. "The fans are great but to get it from the players is even better."

MISCELLANY: NL manager Bruce Bochy chose Mets ace Matt Harvey to start in his home park, but he said it "really wouldn't have mattered what city we were playing in with the year he's had." … Leyland said Scherzer's 13-1 record for the Tigers made him an equally obvious choice: "I don't think I have to explain anything more than that." …The rosters include a record 39 first-time All-Stars.

Comments
Sports Day Tampa Bay podcast: Rays drop three of four in New York

Sports Day Tampa Bay podcast: Rays drop three of four in New York

The Rays lose three of four games in New York as Rick Stroud says they fail to figure out the Yankees' pitching. With Christian Arroyo injured, they activate Adeiny Hechavarria — one of the stars of Sunday's win — from the disabled list a...
Updated: 4 hours ago
Rays journal: Adeiny Hechavarria returns and plays short, but now what?

Rays journal: Adeiny Hechavarria returns and plays short, but now what?

NEW YORK — The Adeiny Hechavarria situation is going to be interesting for the Rays. The veteran seemed destined to be traded or even released as he completed his recovery from a hamstring strain rather than play again for the Rays after last ...
Updated: 8 hours ago
Marc Topkin’s takeaways from Sunday’s Rays-Yankees game

Marc Topkin’s takeaways from Sunday’s Rays-Yankees game

The Rays remain committed to using an "opener" three times in five game stretches, but that seems to tax the bullpen too much. Wilmer Font showed Sunday that he should be able to handle starting, at least until Chris Archer returns.It was only one wi...
Updated: 6 hours ago
Rays journal: Adeiny Hechavarria returns and plays short, but now what?

Rays journal: Adeiny Hechavarria returns and plays short, but now what?

NEW YORK — The Adeiny Hechavarria situation is going to be interesting for the Rays.The veteran seemed destined to be traded or even released as he completed his recovery from a hamstring strain rather than play again for the Rays after last week’s p...
Published: 06/17/18

Marc Topkin’s takeaways from Sunday’s Rays-Yankees game

The Rays remain committed to using an "opener" three times in five game stretches, but that seems to tax the bullpen too much. Wilmer Font showed Sunday that he should be able to handle starting, at least until Chris Archer returns.e_SClBIt was only ...
Published: 06/17/18
Rays leave New York with a smile after beating Yankees 3-1

Rays leave New York with a smile after beating Yankees 3-1

NEW YORK — You had seen this game before.So had the radio guys, the coaches, the manager, the players and, certainly, the bosses.The Rays grab an early lead over the Yankees. They look like they are headed to a rare win in the Bronx. And then when th...
Published: 06/17/18
Rays leave New York with a smile after beating Yankees 3-1

Rays leave New York with a smile after beating Yankees 3-1

NEW YORK – You had seen this game before.So had the radio guys, the coaches, the manager, the players and, certainly, the bosses.The Rays grab an early lead over the Yankees. They look like they are headed to a rare win in the Bronx. And t...
Published: 06/17/18
Rays journal: Adeiny Hechavarria returns and plays short, but now what?

Rays journal: Adeiny Hechavarria returns and plays short, but now what?

NEW YORK — The Adeiny Hechavarria situation is going to be interesting for the Rays.The veteran seemed destined to be traded or even released as he completed his recovery from a hamstring strain rather than play again for the Rays after last we...
Published: 06/17/18
For starters: Rays at Yankees, looking to avoid a four-game sweep

For starters: Rays at Yankees, looking to avoid a four-game sweep

UPDATE, 1:01: Cash said they still have some talking to do, but Adames will be back at SS starting Monday and that Hechavarria likely won't be used anywhere but short so it seems pretty clear he will be on the bench. … And it still seems likely...
Published: 06/17/18
Peering into the crystal baseball to see what Rays could look like in 2019

Peering into the crystal baseball to see what Rays could look like in 2019

The Rays are still talking, as they should, about playing for something this season. The reality is that almost every move they've made, going back to the end of last season, and in some cases further, has been about 2019 and beyond.Clearing out vete...
Published: 06/16/18
Updated: 06/17/18