Wednesday, February 21, 2018
Tampa Bay Rays

Rays: Reliever Steve Geltz surprised by promotion

Rays vs. Blue Jays

When/where: 7:10 tonight; Tropicana Field

TV/radio: Sun Sports; 620-AM

Tickets: $11-$200, available at Tropicana Field box office, Ticketmaster, raysbaseball.com, team Tampa store; $3 surcharge within 5 hours of game time.

Probable pitchers

RAYS: RH Jeremy Hellickson (1-2, 2.98)

BLUE JAYS: RH R.A. Dickey (10-12, 4.00)

On Hellickson: Didn't get through fifth inning of last start at Baltimore, allowing eight hits and charged with four runs. Has had two leads blown by bullpen. Is 5-3, 3.06 in 13 starts vs. Jays.

On Dickey: Knuckleballing nemesis was 1-2, 4.40 in five August starts, allowing 48 baserunners in 301/3 innings. Is 4-5, 4.30 in 15 games (11 starts) vs. Rays, 2-3, 3.57 in nine games (seven starts) at Trop.

Key matchups

Rays VS. DICKEY

Yunel Escobar 4-for-19

Matt Joyce 6-for-30, 2 HRs

Jose Molina 1-for-15

JAYS VS. HELLICKSON

Jose Bautista 8-for-26, 3 HRs

Melky Cabrera 5-for-14

E. Encarnacion 9-for-33, HR

On deck

Wednesday: vs. Blue Jays, 7:10. Rays — RH Chris Archer (8-7, 3.46); Blue Jays — RH Marcus Stroman (8-5, 3.88)

Thursday: vs. Blue Jays, 7:10. Rays — RH Jake Odorizzi (10-11, 4.03); Blue — LH Mark Buehrle (11-9, 3.50)

Friday: vs. Orioles, 7:10. Rays — RH Alex Cobb (9-7, 2.98); Orioles — TBA

Marc Topkin, Times staff writer

No joking, right?

RHP Steve Geltz, right, was not expecting his callup: "Caught offguard is an understatement." So that's why, when he and other Triple-A Durham players got off the bus around 1:30 a.m. Sunday after a ride back from Norfolk, he didn't know why manager Charlie Montoyo was running after him and was "definitely surprised" when he was told he was going to the big leagues. "This is a mean joke if you're playing a joke," Geltz told Montoyo, who assured him it wasn't.

Numbers of the day

4, 13 Rays walkoff wins this season; team-record walkoff wins in 2013.

Good deed of the day

Led by 3B Evan Longoria, Rays players today will wear Strikeout Cancer T-shirts, featuring a backward K in team colors, to raise awareness and funds for the Moffitt Cancer Center. Fans are encouraged to join in; to buy the shirts, go to 108stitches.com.

AL wild-card race

Team W-L Pct. GB

A's 79-58 .577—

Tigers 75-62 .547—

Mariners 73-63 .537 11/2

Indians 70-65 .510 4

Yankees 70-65 .519 4

Blue Jays 69-67 .507 51/2

Rays 67-71 .486 81/2

Comments
Rays trade team MVP Steven Souza Jr. in three-team deal that nets prospects

Rays trade team MVP Steven Souza Jr. in three-team deal that nets prospects

PORT CHARLOTTE — Evan Longoria traded in December. Jake Odorizzi and Corey Dickerson dumped over the weekend. Then, in a stunning move Tuesday night, 2017 team MVP Steven Souza Jr. shipped to Arizona as part of a three-team deal that netted onl...
Updated: 3 hours ago

Who are Anthony Banda and Nick Solak

So, who did the Rays get back for RF Steven Souza Jr.?LHP Anthony Banda, 24, who appeared in eight games/four starts for the Diamondbacks last season, and 2B Nick Solak, 23, from the Yankees organization in addition to two players to be named later f...
Updated: 5 hours ago
Steven Souza trade: Instant reaction to the Rays latest deal

Steven Souza trade: Instant reaction to the Rays latest deal

The Rays traded right fielder Steven Souza, Jr., their 2017 team MVP, to the Arizona Diamondbacks on Tuesday night in a three-team deal for Arizona's No. 2 prospect, lefty Anthony Banda, Yankees infield prospect Nick Solak and two players to be named...
Updated: 7 hours ago
Steven Souza Jr. on Rays’ roster moves: ‘This is not a shocker’

Steven Souza Jr. on Rays’ roster moves: ‘This is not a shocker’

PORT CHARLOTTE — RF Steven Souza Jr. returned to camp Tuesday after missing four days while he went home to Seattle to attend to a family matter.When asked if everything was okay, Souza said, "Right now. We'll just leave it at that."S...
Updated: 9 hours ago
After whirlwind few days, C.J. Cron joins Rays

After whirlwind few days, C.J. Cron joins Rays

PORT CHARLOTTE – C.J. Cron knew he was spending Tuesday night in a Punta Gorda hotel. Beyond that, he knew little of his future with the Rays."I haven't talked to anybody about anything really," Cron said.The right-handed hitting first baseman ...
Updated: 9 hours ago
Who is new Rays 1B/DH C.J. Cron? 10 things to know

Who is new Rays 1B/DH C.J. Cron? 10 things to know

Acquired Saturday night from the Angels (for a player to be named – a minor-leaguer, and not a top prospect), 1B/DH C.J. Cron is expected to join the Rays today in Port Charlotte.Here are 10 things to know about him:1. Full name: Christopher Jo...
Updated: 10 hours ago
Rays tread new turf (literally) for second straight year

Rays tread new turf (literally) for second straight year

PORT CHARLOTTE — Tropicana Field is getting new turf — again.Shaw Sports will replace the surface installed last spring in a mutual decision with the Rays that it did not look as good — from the stands or on TV — as expected.T...
Updated: 10 hours ago
Longtime fan Dick Vitale sounds off on Rays’ latest roster moves

Longtime fan Dick Vitale sounds off on Rays’ latest roster moves

Longtime and extremely popular ESPN college basketball announcer Dick Vitale is arguably the Rays' most prominent fan.The Lakewood Ranch resident has season tickets adjacent to the visitors' dugout at Tropicana Field and is often seen at Rays games.A...
Updated: 12 hours ago
Sports Day Tampa Bay podcast: Is ‘The Ray Tank’ a noun, or a verb?

Sports Day Tampa Bay podcast: Is ‘The Ray Tank’ a noun, or a verb?

The name of the Rays’ new blog, "The Ray Tank’’, inadvertently took on new meaning for fans following the departures of Jake Odorizzi and Corey Dickerson this past weekend.Rick Stroud has the latest from Port Charlotte in his latest podcast, as Kevin...
Published: 02/20/18
Ray Tank: Fans have fun with name of team’s new blog

Ray Tank: Fans have fun with name of team’s new blog

Rays fans upset about the team's recent moves found the perfect target for their ridicule Monday when the team announced the name of its new blog.The Ray Tank.Announcing... The Ray Tank!Our new blog will have behind-the-scenes stories, photos, and mo...
Updated: 11 hours ago