Thursday, April 26, 2018
Tampa Bay Rays

Rays rail: Creepy boar's head, photo day, chill clubhouse

Remaining exhibition games

Tickets: $10-27, available at raysbaseball.com, Charlotte Sports Park and Trop box offices, Tampa team store, through Ticketmaster.

Info: Toll-free 1-888-326-7297 (FAN-RAYS)

All games 1:05 unless noted

February

27: at Pirates

28: vs. Tigers

March

1: at Jays

2: vs. Orioles

3: vs. Twins

4: at Red Sox, 1:35

5: at Twins

6: Off

7: at Pirates

8: vs. Phillies

9: at Phillies

10: vs. Red Sox

11: vs. Twins, 7:05

12: vs. Yankees

13: Off

14: at Orioles

15: vs. Phillies

16: vs. Red Sox

17: at Red Sox, 1:35

18: Off

19: at Tigers

20: at Twins, 7:05

21: vs. Jays

22: vs. Orioles, at Pirates

23: vs. Twins

24: at Yankees

25: vs. Pirates, 7:05

26: at Phillies

27: vs. Jays

28: at Orioles, 7:05

29: at Tigers

30: vs. Tigers at Trop, 1:10



Guest of the day

Steve Schnall, who coached then-QB Joe Maddon on the freshman football team at Lafayette College, visited camp and spoke to the team. Maddon called him "the energy coach." Schnall, right, called him, "the original Doug Flutie."

Number of the day

86.5 Rays wins, the over/under set by the Bovada online gambling site.

Smile for the camera

Thursday was photo day, which meant the players made the rounds for head shots, posed photos and the Tampa Bay Times' Meet the Rays video, which you can look for on tampabay.com by opening day.

Quote of the day

"Beards, earrings, tattoos; we like it all. We definitely promote individuality around here."

Joe Maddon, manager, on the relaxed atmosphere compared to other teams

Heads-up in clubhouse

DH Luke Scott was excited that the boar's head he brought into the clubhouse was mounted to the side of his locker, and he popped a team cap on it. "He's an official Ray now," Scott said. His teammates seemed both amused and surprised. And the kind of creepy fact that its eyes seem to follow one around the room. "That's normal," Scott said.

Who is this Ray?

He was a three-year letterman at Eckerd College. Signed as a free agent. Is in big-league camp for the fifth straight season. Has played leftfield, second base ,catcher and pitcher in minors.

The dish

The Rays will have their final full-squad workout of the spring at 9:30 this morning at the Charlotte Sports Park (2300 El Jobean Road, Port Charlotte), but it will be closed to the public since it is being held on the stadium field. Cutoffs and relays will be the focus.

Marc Topkin, Times staff writer

On deck

Saturday: vs. Pirates, 1:05. Rays — Roberto Hernandez; Pirates — Jeff Locke; at Red Sox (Fort Myers), 1:35. Rays — Enny Romero; Red Sox — John Lackey

Sunday: at Twins (Fort Myers), 1:05. Rays — Chris Archer; Twins — Liam Hendriks

Monday: vs. Red Sox (ss), 1:05. Rays — Alex Cobb; Red Sox — Alfredo Aceves

Tuesday: vs. Astros, 1:05. Rays — David Price; Astros — TBA

Who is this Ray: C Craig Albernaz

Follow our coverage all spring on The Heater blog (tampabay.com/blogs/rays) and on Twitter @TBTimes_Rays.

 
Comments
For starters: Rays at Orioles, looking to make it a six-pack of W’s

For starters: Rays at Orioles, looking to make it a six-pack of W’s

UPDATE, 6:05: LHP Jonny Venters said he was touched and a bit overwhelmed by all the people the reached out to congratulate him on his return to the majors for the first time since 2012. … Cash said Matt Duffy (right hamstring strain) is set to...
Updated: 2 hours ago
A look at the baseball world’s reaction to Venters comeback with Rays

A look at the baseball world’s reaction to Venters comeback with Rays

We tried to explain on Wednesday just how big a deal it was that the Rays were bringing LHP Jonny Venters back to the majors for the first time since his Braves days in 2012. And that it was not only a credit to how hard he worked and how long he per...
Updated: 7 hours ago
Rays morning after: Cobb still searching

Rays morning after: Cobb still searching

The 12 years he spent in the Rays organization, and the seven seasons he was around the big-league team, mean the world to Alex Cobb.But Wednesday he wasn't in the mood for memories.After a third straight outing for his new Orioles team ended badly, ...
Updated: 8 hours ago
Marc Topkin’s takeaways from Rays’ 8-4 win over Orioles

Marc Topkin’s takeaways from Rays’ 8-4 win over Orioles

Marc Topkin's takeaways from the Rays 8-4 win over the Orioles on Wednesday:* RHP Alex Cobb is going to be Alex Cobb again. But it seemed clear from watching him against his old Rays mates he's not quite ready yet, the result of signing in late March...
Updated: 10 hours ago
Don’t call it a comeback: Jonny Venters return to majors with Rays much more than that

Don’t call it a comeback: Jonny Venters return to majors with Rays much more than that

BALTIMORE — First, think of what you were doing on Oct. 5, 2012, and how much has happened in your own world since then.That will give you a time frame.Next, consider the challenge of rehabbing from two Tommy John surgeries and a third procedur...
Updated: 8 hours ago
Rays Journal: An 8-4 win over ex-mate Cobb in a record way, Venters context, Duffy update

Rays Journal: An 8-4 win over ex-mate Cobb in a record way, Venters context, Duffy update

BALTIMORE – The Rays knew there would be mixed feelings for all parties with longtime former teammate Alex Cobb pitching against them in Orioles orange.Then they made sure he didn't enjoy it.The Rays knocked Cobb out in a messy fifth Wednesday,...
Published: 04/25/18
Updated: 04/26/18
Rays bring Jonny Venters back to majors

Rays bring Jonny Venters back to majors

UPDATE, 5:34: Venters, understandably, was humbled and happy to make it back. "It's hard to put into words how I'm feeling," he said. "It's been an emotional day."Venters was in uniform in the Durham clubhouse during rain delay when he got called in ...
Published: 04/25/18
For starters: Rays at Orioles, weather permitting (again)

For starters: Rays at Orioles, weather permitting (again)

The Rays and Orioles are going to try again to play tonight, though the tarp was on the field this afternoon and a light rain falling with heavier precipitation expected later.The Rays, who called up veteran reliever Jonny Venters this afternoon, are...
Published: 04/25/18
Rays up next: at Orioles, 7:05 Wednesday

Rays up next: at Orioles, 7:05 Wednesday

Wednesday: at Orioles7:05, Camden Yards, BaltimoreTV/radio: Fox Sports Sun; 620-AM, 680-AM (Spanish)Probable pitchersRays:  RH Jake Faria (1-1, 5.82)Orioles: RH Alex Cobb (0-2, 15.43)On Faria: Coming off quality start vs. Rangers, allowing Shin-...
Published: 04/25/18
Carlos Gomez says he was guilty of only one thing in Sunday’s epic walkoff homer celebration

Carlos Gomez says he was guilty of only one thing in Sunday’s epic walkoff homer celebration

BALTIMORE – Carlos Gomez is perfectly willing to explain the specific elements that went into his epic celebration tour around the bases following Sunday's walkoff home run.The bat flip and raised arms were his initial reaction to how well he h...
Published: 04/24/18
Updated: 04/25/18