Saturday, January 20, 2018
Tampa Bay Rays

Rays push back Ryan Hanigan's return

ST. PETERSBURG — C Ryan Hani­gan (left oblique) isn't any closer to rejoining the Rays.

A day after Hanigan went 1-for-3 at DH in a rehab assignment for advanced Class A Charlotte, the Rays announced they will shut him down for about a week.

"We just want to make sure that this is right," manager Joe Maddon said. "He's still sore. We don't want to push it."

Hanigan had hoped he'd be ready to come off the DL on Friday. Then he had expected to start at catcher for Charlotte today. The Rays haven't announced a timetable for his return, and they continue to be cautious about rushing him back too quickly from his second stint on the DL this season.

Meanwhile, OF Wil Myers (right wrist) is scheduled to work out today with Charlotte and Tuesday with the Gulf Coast League Rays. If all goes well, he could begin a rehab assignment in Triple-A Durham this weekend.

LONGO GOES SHORT: 3B Evan Lon­goria executed the first sacrifice bunt of his career during the fifth inning.

With no outs, his bunt moved Ben Zobrist and Matt Joyce to second and third, respectively. The maneuver paid off, at least to some degree. James Loney followed with a sacrifice fly before Yunel Escobar flied out to end the inning.

"I think that was him demonstrating the team concept right there," Maddon said of Longoria, who entered Sunday 30-for-97 (.309) with runners in scoring position this season.

"Maybe he wasn't seeing (Angels starter Jered) Weaver good. Yeah, I was surprised."

ON COBB: RHP Alex Cobb has found his old form and begun to look like a pitcher Maddon has called one of the best in the league.

Entering tonight's scheduled start at Oakland, Cobb has given up only one run and eight hits in his previous two games. He's coming off a 12-strikeout performance against the Brewers on Tuesday.

With his mechanical fixes behind him, Cobb doesn't plan to change anything today as the staff's presumptive leader after the David Price trade.

"That's weird that I would be considered the veteran guy," Cobb, 26, said. "I feel like I just got here. … There's nothing more that you try to do, and if you try and do more, you're setting yourself up for failure."

LONG OUTING: A 19-minute power delay caused by a nearby lightning strike was only one reason why a game that began at 1:41 p.m. didn't end until four hours later.

Howie Kendrick fouled eight two-strike pitches off Rays starter Jake Odorizzi before singling in a run in the first, and Rays 2B Logan Forsythe drew a 13-pitch walk to load the bases in the seventh.

GOOD DEEDS: The Rays' wives raised more than $22,000 for Smile Train, an international charity providing free surgery for children with cleft lips and palates, by riding stationary bikes during Saturday's game. Loney and his wife, Nadia, presented a $70,000 check to the Guardian ad Litem Foundation of Tampa Bay to support the organization, which helps abused and neglected children.

LOOKING SHARP: The Rays dressed in formalwear for their road trip to Oakland. Highlights included camouflaged vests from some of the coaching staff and LHP Jake McGee's all-orange tuxedo and top hat.

It's the team's fifth themed road trip of the season and the 33rd since Maddon introduced the idea in 2008.

MISCELLANY: Loney's second consecutive three-hit game extended his on-base streak to 22 games, tied for the second longest of his career. … Joyce celebrated his 30th birthday with three walks and a single. … The Pirates signed INF Jayson Nix, who was released by the organization last week.

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