Saturday, January 20, 2018
Tampa Bay Rays

Shields idle but happy to visit Rays

ST. PETERSBURG — About three weeks ago, Royals right-hander James Shields realized that, against pretty good odds, he wouldn't get to start during this four-game series at Tropicana Field against his former Rays teammates.

"I was trying to finagle the schedule a little bit to pitch against these guys," Shields, 31, said Thursday, "but we kept the same rotation."

Though disappointing in that regard, returning to his home for seven years was rewarding. "A lot of good memories, a lot of happy times, a lot of good friends," he said.

Rather than drive his truck from his Clearwater home, which he has a deal to sell, Shields took a shuttle from the Royals' downtown St. Petersburg hotel. And, of course, he had to walk by the Rays clubhouse to the visitors' side.

"It's definitely weird," he said.

His wife, Ryane, flew in Wednesday night with their two daughters from their new offseason house in San Diego, and they'll see as many old friends as they can, hoping to run by their old neighborhood.

"We'll always have a place in our hearts for this community," Shields said. "This is our home."

He still keeps up and keeps in touch with many of his ex-teammates, saying David Price texts him for advice and how proud he is of Alex Cobb. The Rays showed a video tribute to Shields during Thursday's game. He acknowledged a nice ovation with a wave and tip of the cap, calling it "very classy."

Shields, traded in December for a package headlined by prospect Wil Myers, has pitched well for the Royals, with a 2.79 ERA that ranks seventh in the American League. But he has only two wins — the last one coming when he beat the Rays on April 30 — given a somewhat-familiar lack of run support.

"I'm very happy with the way I've been pitching," he said. "I'll keep grinding it out."

Some things never change.

Comments
Rays infielder Daniel Robertson lends a hand to help families dealing with cancer

Rays infielder Daniel Robertson lends a hand to help families dealing with cancer

Rays infielder Daniel Robertson has much to be excited about heading into his second season in the majors.But before packing for spring training, he took some time last weekend to provide help for families needing assistance in dealing with cancer.Hi...
Updated: 11 hours ago
Ex-Rays star Longoria dons Giants jersey, looks forward to full-stadium environment in San Francisco

Ex-Rays star Longoria dons Giants jersey, looks forward to full-stadium environment in San Francisco

Longtime Rays star Evan Longoria was formally introduced in San Francisco today, adding the visual of him pulling on his new Giants jersey, switching to No. 10 since 3 is retired.Longoria said he welcomed the chance to play on a contending team stock...
Updated: 12 hours ago
What do Rays look like now? What will they look like March 29?

What do Rays look like now? What will they look like March 29?

ST. PETERSBURG — Since entering an off-season planning major change and pledging to be open to "anything and everything,'' the Rays have made a few minor moves and one massive one in trading franchise cornerstone Evan Longoria to San Francisco....
Published: 01/19/18
Reminder: Rays spring tickets go on sale today at 10 a.m.

Reminder: Rays spring tickets go on sale today at 10 a.m.

The Rays will put single game tickets for spring training home games on sale today at 10 a.m. via raysbaseball.com.The Rays are playing 14 home games in Port Charlotte, starting with the Feb. 23 opener vs. Pittsburgh. Tickets will be available at the...
Published: 01/19/18
Tampa Bay Rays 2018 spring training schedule

Tampa Bay Rays 2018 spring training schedule

Charlotte Sports Park, 2300 El Jobean Rd., Port Charlotte, 33948Get tickets here: (941) 206-4487Pitchers report: Feb. 13. Squad reports: Feb. 19TEAM SCHEDULE(games at 1:05 unless noted)(ss - split squad)Feb 23 at Orioles (ss) (Sarasota)Feb 23 PIRATE...
Published: 01/19/18
Ex-Phillies, Indians manager Charlie Manuel to get Ted Williams Museum award

Ex-Phillies, Indians manager Charlie Manuel to get Ted Williams Museum award

Former Phillies and Indians manager Charlie Manuel will receive the Ted Williams Lifetime Achievement Award on Feb. 10 in Clearwater.The honor is bestowed by the Ted Williams Museum at its annual Hitters Hall of Fame induction, moving this year from ...
Published: 01/19/18
Former Rays OF Matt Joyce to hold annual charity baseball camp at North Brandon complex

Former Rays OF Matt Joyce to hold annual charity baseball camp at North Brandon complex

Armwood High product Matt Joyce, the current A's and former Rays outfielder, hosts his ninth annual Sweet Swingin' charity baseball camp for kids 6-12 on Sunday at the North Brandon youth baseball complex (2929 S Kingsway Rd, Seffner).Registration st...
Published: 01/18/18
Rays spring tickets go on sale Friday

Rays spring tickets go on sale Friday

The Rays will put single game tickets for spring training home games on sale Friday at 10 a.m. via raysbaseball.com.The Rays are playing 14 home games in Port Charlotte, starting with the Feb. 23 opener vs. Pittsburgh. Tickets will be available at th...
Published: 01/17/18
A look at Rays 40-man roster with spring training starting in less than a month

A look at Rays 40-man roster with spring training starting in less than a month

With the start of spring training now less than a month away, here is what the Rays roster looks like, with the most glaring hole at first base, which at this point seems likely to be manned by Brad Miller, and some questions about the pitching staff...
Published: 01/17/18
Rays opener will be late-afternoon affair

Rays opener will be late-afternoon affair

The Rays' March 29 season-opener against the Red Sox has been set for a 4 p.m. first pitch at Tropicana Field.This will be the ninth straight year the Rays have opened at home, and the third time they have opened against the rival Red Sox.  The ...
Published: 01/17/18