Tuesday, January 16, 2018
Tampa Bay Rays

Rays' Myers excited for return to Kansas City

ST. PETERSBURG — Royals fans were teased a couple of times with exhibition appearances over the years while waiting for heavily hyped OF prospect Wil Myers to officially arrive at Kauffman Stadium.

He'll finally get there today, but as a visitor playing — and quite well — for the Rays following the December blockbuster trade.

"I'm really excited about it," Myers said. "Going back to Kansas City, where I played. I'm excited playing Kansas City. I really want to win, that's the biggest thing."

Myers, 22, has pretty much lived up to the hype since his mid-June callup, hitting .302 with nine home runs and 39 RBIs in 55 games, though cooler of late, and ranking among the top candidates for the AL rookie of the year award.

Rays manager Joe Maddon is eager to see the scene play out today.

"I know he's excited about it; I'm very excited for him," Maddon said. "I know he'll be even a bit more jacked up than normal. … He is in a sense going home, and it's good to get that out of the way."

MOORE UPDATE: LHP Matt Moore felt good the morning after testing his previously sore left elbow in a simulated game, reporting only "normal soreness" when he woke Sunday and reiterating that he felt ready to rejoin the rotation Thursday. But Rays officials preferred a more cautious track, and they, of course, prevailed. Maddon announced that Moore, out since July 28, will instead make a rehab start Thursday "in a minor-league city to be named later" then if all goes well rejoin the rotation Sept. 3 in Anaheim.

LEADING MAN: Newly acquired OF David DeJesus went 3-for-4 out of the leadoff spot, and Maddon said he plans to keep him there against right-handed starters. CF Desmond Jennings, who dropped to seventh, will still keep the leadoff job against left-handers.

ALEX THE GREAT: RHP Alex Cobb made a third straight solid start since coming off the disabled list, allowing a solo homer in the fourth and another run in a three-hit sixth. Maddon said Cobb "kind of ran out of gas a little bit," but Cobb said stamina was not the issue as he hit the 100-pitch mark for the first time since June 5. "I still felt like I had the same stuff I had, I don't think endurance lacked at all," he said.

MINOR MATTERS: OF Brandon Guyer, who has been with Triple-A Durham all year but moved to the major-league disabled list after breaking his right middle finger, began a rehab assignment by going 0-for-3 with a walk for the Bulls. … OF Jason Bourgeois, designated for assignment last week, cleared waivers and accepted an outright assignment to Durham.

MISCELLANY: 3B Evan Longoria homered in his third straight game, the seventh time he has done so, and has five homers in his past seven, 28 overall. … 1B James Loney went 0-for-10 in the series and is now 2-for-13 with the bases loaded. … The crowd of 34,078 was the third sellout of the season; the Rays still started the day last in the majors in attendance. … DH/OF Delmon Young was 0-for-3 with a walk in his third game for Montgomery, 2-for-11 overall. … Yankees 3B Alex Rodriguez came off the bench to single in the 10th, the first pinch-hit of his career; he had been 0-for-14.

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