Thursday, November 23, 2017
Tampa Bay Rays

Rays' Ryan Hanigan to avoid disabled list

RECOMMENDED READING


ST. PETERSBURG — The Rays caught a break on the injury front Tuesday, as C Ryan Hanigan's sore right hamstring felt good enough to where he'll avoid going on the disabled list.

"Big relief," he said.

Hanigan, who left Friday's game with a "cramp or mild strain," said the extra couple of days of treatment and rest helped loosen it up, and he felt good after testing the muscle with an array of baseball activities Tuesday afternoon. Hanigan entered in the ninth behind the plate Tuesday night, and manager Joe Maddon said he'll likely start tonight against the A's.

"Good news," Maddon said.

Hanigan said he'll have to stay smart with the injury and keep an eye on it, but it's "manageable." Whether it limits his workload — Hanigan has made the lion's share of the starts behind the plate — remains to be seen.

"I'm not sure, I hope not," Hanigan said. "I want to be there for this team, I want to be out there."

ON TRACK: RHP Alex Cobb (oblique strain) declared himself ready to return to the rotation and will start Thursday.

"Can't wait to get back out there," Cobb said.

With Cobb coming back, LHP Cesar Ramos returned to the bullpen Tuesday night, working in long relief after RHP Jake Odorizzi was pulled two outs into the fifth. Ramos said he was disappointed but understood the team's decision, but hope he left an impression.

"I think they appreciate the option they have with me, because you can do whatever and I'm going to figure it out and try it," Ramos said. "So I think it's good they've seen me at least start, and hopefully later down the line, who knows? It's like going into spring training, that's the last thing you'd thought, 'Oh Ramos would be a starter for the Rays?' Yeah right. It happened."

Cobb, who had normal soreness after Saturday's minor-league rehab start for Class A Charlotte, was encouraged after his Monday bullpen session and Tuesday catch went well. "To come out with everything good to go is extremely exciting," he said.

Cobb, on the disabled list since April 13, said it's "kind of flown by for me."

IN LIMBO: Maddon said they felt they could utilize OF Kevin Kiermaier more than an extra reliever Tuesday. But when Cobb gets activated Thursday, it's likely Kiermaier will be sent down to make room. The Rays could also decide to option struggling INF Logan Forsythe or designate OF Brandon Guyer, but Maddon reiterated his faith in both of them Tuesday.

IN THE SWING: Both 3B Evan Longoria and RF Wil Myers spent time doing early onfield work with hitting coach Derek Shelton before Tuesday's game. Myers, who hit off a tee, wouldn't get specific but said he noticed something on video he did last season that he wasn't doing this year, so he wanted to work on it. "It looks small but it's kind of a major thing," Myers said.

Myers, the reigning AL rookie of the year, entered Tuesday hitting .243 with zero homers and two RBIs in his previous 13 games. But Myers dismissed the sophomore slump idea.

"That's the thing about last year, I wasn't missing my pitch for most of the year, and I've missed it a lot this last road trip," Myers said. "Everybody says, 'Well, the reason why you're struggling 'cause it's your second year.' But I struggled last year, I feel like a lot of people forget that I struggled in August last year, it's one of those things. They're throwing me some breaking balls, but I'm swinging at breaking balls in the dirt right now.

"It's not the pitching. I think even if I was in High A right now I'd be struggling, it's more of a mental thing. So get it turned it around as soon as possible."

CENTER STAGE: CF Desmond Jennings was reinstated from the bereavement list and back in the lineup Tuesday after missing two games.

Comments
Presenting the 2017 Sports Turkey of the Year

Presenting the 2017 Sports Turkey of the Year

Happy Turkey Day!Today is a day of tradition.The Macy’s parade. Turkey and stuffing. The Lions and Cowboys.And our annual "Turkey of the Year.’’It’s a tradition started by my former colleague at the Minneapolis Star Tribune, the brilliant columnist P...
Updated: 10 hours ago
Rays INF Matt Duffy has to say big goodbye to 27-pound cat Skeeter

Rays INF Matt Duffy has to say big goodbye to 27-pound cat Skeeter

When the Rays acquired INF Matt Duffy from the Giants during the 2016 season, we also heard about the giant and somewhat famous cat he had, an up-to-27-pounder named Skeeter.Duffy announced over the weekend on Instagram that the family had to have Sk...
Published: 11/21/17
Rays agonize over which prospects to protect on 40-man roster

Rays agonize over which prospects to protect on 40-man roster

ST. PETERSBURG — That the Rays went right up to Monday’s 8 p.m. deadline in deciding to add seven players to the 40-man roster, and that a couple they left off seem to be potential Rule 5 draft losses, was apparently a good thing."There’s always some...
Published: 11/20/17
Updated: 11/21/17
UPDATE: RHP Brent Honeywell among 7 added to Rays 40-man roster

UPDATE: RHP Brent Honeywell among 7 added to Rays 40-man roster

UPDATE, 8:11: RHP Jose Mujica was an additional addition to the roster, beyond the six previously reported. Mujica, 21, was 14-8, 3.04 ERA in 27 starts between Class-A Charlotte and Double-A Montgomery.So among those left unprotected and potentially ...
Published: 11/20/17
Former Devil Ray Aubrey Huff among newcomers to Baseball Hall of Fame ballot

Former Devil Ray Aubrey Huff among newcomers to Baseball Hall of Fame ballot

Aubrey Huff isn't going to make the Baseball Hall of Fame.But at least the former Devil Rays standout has the satisfaction of making the cut to get onto the ballot, one of 19 first-timers up for election this year.Other newcomers with Rays ties are O...
Published: 11/20/17
Topkin: As Rays start dealing, how far will they go?

Topkin: As Rays start dealing, how far will they go?

After collecting intelligence at last week’s GM meetings, the Rays soon will launch their offseason mission of trading at least a couple of veterans to reduce payroll.The question is how far they will go — how many players they deal, and how big of n...
Published: 11/18/17
Rocco Baldelli’s promotion on Rays coaching staff now makes him major league field coordinator

Rocco Baldelli’s promotion on Rays coaching staff now makes him major league field coordinator

The Rays completed the reorganization of their coaching staff by giving Rocco Baldelli the title of major league field coordinator.In being promoted from first-base coach, Baldelli will implement ideas and information from the staff, while assisting ...
Published: 11/17/17
Rays hope to cash in on Alex Cobb leaving

Rays hope to cash in on Alex Cobb leaving

LAKE BUENA VISTA — The Rays were banking on pitcher Alex Cobb declining their one-year, $17.4 million qualifying offer based on the lure of a longer-term and more lucrative deal elsewhere as a free agent.With that decision official Thursday, now the ...
Published: 11/16/17
Commissioner Rob Manfred likes Ybor City stadium site, but must see more support to keep baseball in Tampa Bay

Commissioner Rob Manfred likes Ybor City stadium site, but must see more support to keep baseball in Tampa Bay

LAKE BUENA VISTA — MLB commissioner Rob Manfred didn’t want to talk Thursday about what might happen if the current effort to build the Rays a new stadium at the Ybor City site falls through."I’m more focused on working with the community to figure o...
Published: 11/16/17
A message to Rays fans from Alex Cobb

A message to Rays fans from Alex Cobb

Here is a message from RHP Alex Cobb after he officially left the Rays Thursday in declining their one-year, $17.4-milllion qualifying offer to seek a bigger and longer pact elsewhere:"Getting to this point in my career is truly bittersweet."Twelve y...
Published: 11/16/17