Thursday, January 18, 2018
Tampa Bay Rays

Rays' Price thrilled to finally get win

CHICAGO — The controversy with home plate umpire Tom Hallion aside, the rest of Sunday seemed to go pretty well for LHP David Price and the Rays.

Price picked up his first victory in six starts after working seven innings of what was then a 3-3 game and seeing his teammates rally for what ended up an 8-3 win over the White Sox.

"It feels good to get a win," Price said.

Price pitched relatively well, perhaps best after he allowed a two-run homer to Paul Konerko that put the Sox up 3-1 in the third, retiring the next nine. He allowed only one more hit, a single to Conor Gillaspie leading off the seventh, and that's when he got the kind of break that had been eluding him — "I said, 'Thank you!' " Price said — a line drive by Tyler Flowers right at SS Ben Zobrist that turned into a double play because the Sox had a hit-and-run on.

Price had been unhappy when manager Joe Maddon pulled him earlier than he expected in his two previous starts and appreciated the chance to start the seventh despite having thrown 105 pitches.

Maddon acknowledged the benefit of the win in boosting Price's confidence, but he said it was a "perfect storm" combination of the hitters due up, Price's workload in the previous starts and having an extra day before his next start, and not an emotional decision — "zero percent" — to try to get Price the win.

In any case, Price — who allowed six hits and struck out nine — was pleased.

"It feels good to have that confidence behind me from the bench and from our manager to be able to go out there and get outs," he said.

ANOTHER BREAK: The Rays (12-13) took the lead with a three-run eighth that included some help from the Sox.

Sean Rodriguez got them started with a bloop single, went to second on a wild pitch and, after Matt Joyce walked, scored on Zobrist's one-out single. After Evan Longoria walked to load the bases and James Loney popped out, the Rays got a huge break as Ryan Roberts sliced a ball down the rightfield line that Alex Rios got his glove on but didn't hang on to, the error allowing two runs to score.

"Great, great at-bat. Rios is an excellent outfielder, and you're not going to see that happen maybe once a millennium, but we were very fortunate," Maddon said. "We have not had many breaks, but we'll take that."

MEDICAL MATTERS: C Jose Molina was sore the morning after leaving Saturday's game with a quad contusion from being hit by a pitch but was available to play, and should be ready to go by Tuesday. … The Rays are hoping the same for SS Yunel Escobar, who remains sidelined since leaving Wednesday's game with tightness in his right hamstring. Escobar has been showing some improvement, but the Rays want to give him through today's off day to rest. "He took ground balls (Sunday) and he's doing well," Maddon said. "Hopefully he's going to be able to play Tuesday in Kansas City."

REHAB REPORT: DH Luke Scott will be evaluated this morning as the Rays decide whether he is ready to come off the DL after going 4-for-18 in five rehab games for advanced Class A Charlotte, including 2-for-5 with a double Sunday. "He's kind of on track to join us in Kansas City, but we'll know more after (Sunday)," Maddon said.

If the Rays do activate Scott, they seem most likely to part ways with Shelley Duncan, who is hitting .182 with two homers and six RBIs.

MISCELLANY: The Rays got homers from Jose Lobaton and Joyce, extending their streak of games with homers to 14, one shy of the team record set in 2009. … The Rays allowed three stolen bases, making it 23 of 26 successful.

Comments
Former Rays OF Matt Joyce to hold annual charity baseball camp at North Brandon complex

Former Rays OF Matt Joyce to hold annual charity baseball camp at North Brandon complex

Armwood High product Matt Joyce, the current A's and former Rays outfielder, hosts his ninth annual Sweet Swingin' charity baseball camp for kids 6-12 on Sunday at the North Brandon youth baseball complex (2929 S Kingsway Rd, Seffner).Registration st...
Updated: 6 hours ago
Rays spring tickets go on sale Friday

Rays spring tickets go on sale Friday

The Rays will put single game tickets for spring training home games on sale Friday at 10 a.m. via raysbaseball.com.The Rays are playing 14 home games in Port Charlotte, starting with the Feb. 23 opener vs. Pittsburgh. Tickets will be available at th...
Published: 01/17/18
A look at Rays 40-man roster with spring training starting in less than a month

A look at Rays 40-man roster with spring training starting in less than a month

With the start of spring training now less than a month away, here is what the Rays roster looks like, with the most glaring hole at first base, which at this point seems likely to be manned by Brad Miller, and some questions about the pitching staff...
Published: 01/17/18
Rays opener will be late-afternoon affair

Rays opener will be late-afternoon affair

The Rays' March 29 season-opener against the Red Sox has been set for a 4 p.m. first pitch at Tropicana Field.This will be the ninth straight year the Rays have opened at home, and the third time they have opened against the rival Red Sox.  The ...
Published: 01/17/18
Tony Perez, Dick Allen to highlight    Ted Williams museum inductions

Tony Perez, Dick Allen to highlight Ted Williams museum inductions

Hall of Famer Tony Perez and longtime Phillies/White Sox star Dick Allen will be inducted into the Ted Williams Hitters Hall of Fame next month in Clearwater.Former Yankees Cy Young Award winner Ron Guidry and longtime Astros ace J.R. Richard also wi...
Published: 01/16/18
Jones: Besties, Ball and bloopers -- itís TV tidbits time

Jones: Besties, Ball and bloopers -- itís TV tidbits time

Tampa Bay Times columnist Tom Jones looks back at the best and worst from a weekend of televised sports.Best comebackExcuse Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp for getting so carried away that he dropped the queen bee of curse words on live television Sun...
Published: 01/14/18
Jesuit High product Lance McCullers gets big raise, avoids arbitration

Jesuit High product Lance McCullers gets big raise, avoids arbitration

Astros right-hander Lance McCullers, a Tampa native and former Jesuit High standout, reached a one-year deal for $2.45 million on Friday, avoiding arbitration. McCullers, 24, made $548,000 last season.
Published: 01/12/18
Jake Odorizzi, Adeiny Hechavarria lone Rays set for arbitration

Jake Odorizzi, Adeiny Hechavarria lone Rays set for arbitration

ST. PETERSBURG ó For the second straight winter, pitcher Jake Odorizzi is taking the Rays to arbitration.Shortstop Adeiny Hechavarria will join him.They were the only two of the nine arbitration-eligible Rays to not agree to a one-year contract by Fr...
Published: 01/12/18
Odorizzi, Hechavarria heading to arbitration

Odorizzi, Hechavarria heading to arbitration

The Rays have reached agreements on 2018 contracts with seven of their nine arbitration-eligible players with pitcher Jake Odorizzi and shortstop Adeiny Hechavarria heading to arbitration.Odorizzi made $4.1 million last season after taking the R...
Published: 01/12/18
Alex Colome, Corey Dickerson, Jake Odorizzi among Raysí arbitration-eligible players

Alex Colome, Corey Dickerson, Jake Odorizzi among Raysí arbitration-eligible players

ST. PETERSBURG ó The payroll for the 2018 season will become clearer this afternoon after the Rays and their nine arbitration-eligible players exchange figures on one-year contracts.Those who do not agree to the clubís offer will head to arbitration ...
Published: 01/11/18