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Spring training

Rays: Surprising number of ex-Padres in camp

Name game

If LHP C.J. Riefenhauser makes it up from the minors to pitch for the Rays, he would match RHP Jason Isringhausen for an important distinction: The longest last name in franchise history at 12 letters.

Screen play

Most pitchers prefer to have the L-shaped screen in front of them for protection when they throw batting practice, but not RHP Grant Balfour, who moved it aside when taking the mound Saturday. "I'd rather not have it," he said. "It's kind of like throwing with a wall in front of you. I feel like you shorten up a bit on your arm (in your delivery). … I know why it's there."

Sorry for your luck

It's no more obvious how far the pitchers are ahead of the hitters than the first few days of live batting practice, but LHP David Price said the mound men have no sympathy for their bat-toting brothers. "It feels good to go out there and try to hurt their confidence a little bit," he said. "I don't know that they ever feel sorry for us."

Who is this Ray?

Has hit three inside-the-park homers. Played for three teams last season. Played collegiately at Rutgers. Has a brother who played minor-league ball.

The dish

Today's full-squad workout starts at 9:30 a.m. at the Charlotte Sports Park (2300 El Jobean Road) and will last 3-plus hours. Admission and parking free. Driving time from the bay area is 1½-2 hours. Suggested route: I-75 South to Toledo Blade Road, go west 6½ miles to El Jobean Road (SR 776), go right 2 miles, stadium complex is on left. For more information: (941) 235-5025.

Heads-up

Chris Archer, Alex Colome, Matt Moore, Joel Peralta and Enny Romero are among the pitchers scheduled to throw live batting practice, starting around 11.

Exhibition schedule

Rays tickets: Single-game range from $10-$29, available at raysbaseball.com, via phone (toll-free 1-800-745-3000), CSP or Tropicana Field box offices, team Tampa Store (400 N Tampa St.), all Ticketmaster outlets.

All games 1:05 p.m. unless noted.

Feb.

28 Orioles

March

1 at Pirates

2 Twins

3 Phillies

4 at Red Sox

5 Yankees

6 at Orioles

7 at Blue Jays

8 Pirates

9 at Yankees

10 at Red Sox

11 Twins

12 at Blue Jays

13 Pirates

14 at Braves

15 (ss) Blue Jays; at Pirates

16 Red Sox

17 OFF

18 at Twins, 7:05

19 at Orioles

20 Twins, 7:05

21 Blue Jays

22 Orioles

23 at Red Sox

24 at Twins

25 Red Sox

26 Orioles 7:05

27 at Orioles, 7:05

28 at Tigers

29 at AA Montgomery (Ala.), 3:05

Who is this Ray: OF David DeJesus

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

The San Diego shuffle

Of the 64 players on the Rays' spring roster, 11 — a surprisingly high number — are former Padres. "That's crazy," said one, INF Vince Belnome. "It's like the 'Tampa Bay Padres.' " Eight came in trades: RHPs Matt Andriese, Heath Bell, Brad Boxberger, Brandon Gomes; LHP Cesar Ramos; INFs Belnome, Cole Figueroa, Logan Forsythe. Three signed as free agents: OF James Darnell; Cs Eddy Rodriguez, Ali Solis.

Quote of the day

"I'm glad the season's not starting."

OF Wil Myers, joking after the first day of facing live pitching

Rays: Surprising number of ex-Padres in camp 02/22/14 [Last modified: Saturday, February 22, 2014 8:43pm]
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