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)

Session goes well for Rays' Crain

ST. PETERSBURG — RHP Jesse Crain admitted he was a little nervous, even worried, heading into Monday, when he was scheduled to throw to hitters for the first time in 2½ months.

Crain, 32, rehabbing a shoulder strain since June 30, knew it could be the last test in his longer-than-expected recovery before possibly joining the Rays bullpen.

That's why Crain was so encouraged after his heavily attended 30-pitch session Monday afternoon, saying he felt — and threw — better than he expected.

"If I could grade (Monday), I'd give it probably an A," Crain said.

How Crain feels today will determine when the All-Star will be activated and gradually worked into the bullpen. Manager Joe Maddon said if Crain feels "effusively great," he could join in a couple of days.

"We've got to break him in slowly, just don't throw him into the wolves," Maddon said. "You know what he's capable of doing eventually, but in the beginning, you just try to pick your spot and get his feet on the ground and move it from there."

Crain said he was pretty close to game action in pitching to C Chris Gimenez and OF Sam Fuld, with Maddon, executive VP Andrew Friedman, president Matt Silverman and about 10 Rays watching. Fuld said "everything seemed pretty sharp," similar to how the veteran looked before the injury.

Crain, acquired from the White Sox on July 29, was 2-3 with a 0.74 ERA in 38 appearances.

"Obviously I'm not totally 100 percent to where I was, but I'd give it a good 90 percent," he said. "The stuff will come. It's been 2½ months since I've been out there on a mound pitching to hitters, but my mechanics were good, the ball was coming out of my hand good. And the command will come the more time I'm out there on the mound."

WITH HONORS: LHP David Price said he was honored to be named the Rays nominee for the Roberto Clemente Award, which recognizes players based on their dedication to giving back to the community as well as their ability on the field. Price said it meant "a ton" to be linked to the Hall of Famer and that he enjoys giving back, something taught to him by his parents.

"Everybody in professional sports I guarantee you is a role model to somebody," Price said. "I want to be a positive influence on as many people's lives as I can."

PITCHING IN: RHP Jeremy Hellickson feels pretty good heading into tonight's start against the Rangers, having pitched well in his past two outings since coming back from his seven-day break with Class A Charlotte.

Hellickson said he'd like better command than his last start, a no-decision against Boston, but his changeup resulted in 13 swings and misses, and the Rays won both outings.

"It's nice to see the results, especially when we win the ball game," Hellickson said. "That month, I wasn't even giving us a chance to win, and the way we score late, if I can just go deep and give us a chance to win, it's really all I want to do right now."

COMING UP: The Rays continued mulling over potential callups, with INF Tim Beckham, the 2008 top overall pick, among the possibilities, but it likely won't occur until after Triple-A Durham plays in tonight's championship game against Omaha (Royals) in Allentown, Pa. RHP Jake Odorizzi and LHP Jeff Beliveau are other top candidates to be added.

MISCELLANY: There was a moment of silence before Monday's game to honor the 12 victims of the shooting at the Washington Naval Yard. … Monday's episode of Mission October, which filmed behind-the-scenes access of the Rays over the weekend, will be replayed on Fox Sports 1 at 12:30 p.m. today and 7 p.m. Thursday.

Session goes well for Rays' Crain 09/16/13 [Last modified: Tuesday, September 17, 2013 10:56am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Rays at Yankees, 7:05 p.m. Tuesday, New York

    The Heater

    Tonight: at Yankees

    7:05, Yankee Stadium, New York

    TV/radio: Fox Sports Sun; 620-AM, 680-AM (Spanish)

    Tampa Bay Rays' Blake Snell poses for a picture during the team's photo day at baseball spring training in Port Charlotte, Fla., Saturday, Feb. 18, 2017. (AP Photo/David Goldman)
  2. Luke Del Rio regains UF starting job, for now

    College

    GAINESVILLE — Luke Del Rio is once again the starting quarterback for No. 21 Florida.

    Luke Del Rio provided a needed spark when he replaced starter Feleipe Franks and rallied Florida past Kentucky.
  3. Four questions the Lightning still has to answer

    Lightning Strikes

    FORT LAUDERDALE — The Lightning made its biggest round of cuts Monday, with some of the big-name prospects heading out.

    Tampa Bay Lightning forward Steven Stamkos (91) looks on from the bench during a shift change at Lightning hockey training camp in Brandon on Monday (09/18/17). In background on right is Nikita Kucherov (86). DIRK SHADD   |   Times  

  4. Nine Florida football players, 62 felony complaints in fraud scandal

    College

    GAINESVILLE — The fraud scandal that has engulfed the University of Florida's nationally ranked football team for weeks exploded Monday with the first detailed accounts of criminal accusations that threaten to derail the Gators' season.

    Florida Gators wide receiver Antonio Callaway (81) runs the ball during the Outback Bowl in January at Raymond James Stadium. [CHARLIE KAIJO   |   Times]
  5. Where Rays shortstop Matt Duffy's lost season leads

    The Heater

    BRADENTON — In a perfect world, Matt Duffy would have been in New York on Monday with his Rays teammates enjoying the final off day of the year. Instead, he was on Field 4 at Pirate City on a sweltering afternoon, trying to restart his season.

    Rays shortstop Matt Duffy plays in his first game (since rehab was aborted) with the club's instructional league on Monday at the Pirate City baseball field and spring training complex in Bradenton [DOUGLAS R. CLIFFORD  |  Times]