Make us your home page
Instagram

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Rays send Gimenez to minors, name Lobaton backup catcher

STILL STRUGGLING: Matt Moore’s shaky spring continues as he walks five batters in 42/3 innings, though only two runs.

JAMES BORCHUCK | Times

STILL STRUGGLING: Matt Moore’s shaky spring continues as he walks five batters in 42/3 innings, though only two runs.

PORT CHARLOTTE — C Jose Lobaton will be the Rays' second catcher behind Jose Molina to start the season.

The Rays decided one of their few position battles Monday night when they optioned C Chris Gimenez to Triple-A Durham.

The news wasn't unexpected, even to Gimenez. Even though Gimenez had a much better spring, hitting .368, Lobaton was out of minor-league options, meaning he could be lost on waivers.

Gimenez said he was disappointed but appreciated the Rays' honesty in telling him it was the options that were the culprit. Manager Joe Maddon said Gimenez "definitely could be in the big leagues right now" but "it's part of the business."

"I'm not going to go down and, like I said last year, be 'Bitter Bob,' " Gimenez said. "You've just got to take it for what it is, and keep working to keep yourself doing the same things. It'll just be a matter of time."

Lobaton, who admittedly struggled in hitting .257, said he didn't know what would happen, telling his wife Monday morning to prepare for anything.

"I'm excited," Lobaton said. "I know it was a really tough decision for the GM and the manager, 'cause I know Gimenez was killing the ball. So in the moment when he told me, I was like, 'Oh wow.' Really sad for (Gimenez). But that's baseball."

The Rays also reassigned OF Shelley Duncan, who had a team-high five home runs, OF Jason Bourgeois and INF Mike Fontenot to minor-league camp.

PITCHING IN: LHP Matt Moore labored through another tough outing, needing 106 pitches to last 42/3 innings in a 6-2 victory over the Pirates.

Moore was able to pitch well "with my back against the wall," allowing just two runs on six hits, but he had five walks, saying he continues to struggle getting a feel for his fastball.

Moore isn't concerned, saying "it's there when I need it," and Maddon noted that the lefty is healthy and a "notoriously slow starter." "You just got to be patient," Maddon said.

GREAT SCOTT: DH Luke Scott was scratched from Monday's lineup as a precaution due to tightness in his right calf. Maddon didn't have a projection for how long Scott would be out, but he didn't appear concerned.

GAME STUFF: 3B Evan Longoria and 2B Ben Zobrist each hit two-run homers in the fifth inning for the Rays (15-14), who snapped a five-game skid. Longoria's was his first of the spring. … Longoria had two errors on one play in the fourth. … RHP Brandon Gomes and RHP Joel Peralta were strong in relief.

MEDICAL MATTERS: OF Sam Fuld, sidelined with right hamstring tightness, batted six times (0-for-5 with a walk) and played five innings in centerfield during a minor-league game Monday. He said all went well, and he plans to take today off and play in the Rays' spring home finale Wednesday against the Blue Jays.

RHP Kyle Farnsworth said his bruised middle finger is better, that he threw all his pitches with no issues on Sunday and he expects to make his scheduled appearance Wednesday in a minor-league game.

PITCHING IN: RHPs Jeff Niemann and Fernando Rodney and LHP Jake McGee will pitch in Wednesday's exhibition against the Blue Jays. RHP Alex Cobb, Farnsworth and RHP Jamey Wright will appear in a minor-league game the same day.

MINOR MATTERS: The Rays acquired minor-league C Curt Casali from the Tigers in exchange for LHP Kyle Lobstein, who had been lost in the Rule 5 draft to the Mets, who then sold him to the Tigers the same day. … Touted prospect OF Wil Myers, sidelined in minor-league camp with right wrist soreness, tweeted he will return to game action Wednesday and is "ready for the season."

Joe Smith can be reached at joesmith@tampabay.com.

Rays send Gimenez to minors, name Lobaton backup catcher 03/25/13 [Last modified: Monday, March 25, 2013 11:19pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Rays morning after: An up-and down day for Jose De Leon

    Blogs

    Rays RHP Jose De Leon had a busy Monday - getting called up to join the Rays for the first time and making his way from Pawtucket, R.I., to Boston and the flying to Texas, working 2 2/3 eventful innings to get the W in the 10-8 victory over the Rangers, and then getting optioned back to Triple-A.

    Jose De Leon follows through in the sixth inning against the Texas Rangers at Globe Life Park in Arlington, Texas, on May 29, 2017.
  2. Tiger Woods says medication, not alcohol, led to DUI arrest in Florida

    Public Safety

    Players arriving for a tournament this week at Muirfield Village might notice a framed picture of Tiger Woods with a resplendent smile and bright red shirt. He's posed there with the trophy, an image that embodies the excitement he once brought to golf.

    This image provided by the Palm Beach County Sheriff's Office on Monday, May 29, 2017, shows Tiger Woods. Police in Florida say Tiger Woods was been arrested for DUI.  [Palm Beach County Sheriff's office via AP]
  3. Four key games that could decide Bucs' success in 2017

    Blogs

    The Bucs finished so close to making the playoffs in 2016 -- literally flip-flop the last two results and have them beat the Saints and lose to the Panthers and they're in as a wild card with the same 9-7 record -- that it's difficult to say with any certainty what will happen in the 2017 season.

    Bucs quarterback Jameis Winston, shown celebrating a touchdown against the Giants in 2015, will face New York again this fall in Week 4 in Tampa.
  4. Frank Deford wrote with sincerity, giving depth to complicated sports figures

    Human Interest

    Frank Deford practically invented the notion of multimedia: He exported his voice to radio, TV and film, and if you didn't know him you might have thought he was an actor, because he wore purple suits and looked like Clark Gable. But Frank, who died Sunday at age 78, was a writer above all things, and an important …

    In a 1991 photo, Frank Deford holds a proof of The National Sports Daily, of which he was editor and publisher [Associated Press]
  5. Clarity coming this week on Florida Gators, Malik Zaire

    Blogs

    After months of speculation, we could finally get some clarity this week on the Florida Gators and graduate transfer quarterback Malik Zaire.

    SEC flags outside the hotel of last year's spring meetings in Destin. This year's meetings could have a huge impact on the Florida Gators' season.