Thursday, March 22, 2018
Tampa Bay Rays

Tampa Bay Rays add former top pick Tim Beckham to 40-man roster

ST. PETERSBURG — Tim Beckham's rise through the Rays' farm system has been slow and heavily scrutinized, as he was the top pick in a 2008 draft that has yielded dozens of big-leaguers topped by NL MVP Buster Posey.

But Beckham, 22, moved a step closer Tuesday when he was added to the Rays' 40-man roster, along with shortstop Hak-Ju Lee and left-handers Felipe Rivero and Enny Romero, protecting them from being taken in the Dec. 6 Rule 5 draft.

Beckham hit .256 with six homers and 28 RBIs at Triple-A Durham, playing second base in addition to shortstop, while sitting out 50 games for a drug test violation.

Lee, considered the Rays' top position prospect, hit .261/4/37 with 37 steals at Double-A Montgomery, missing time with injury. Romero was 5-7, 3.93 in 25 games (23 starts) for advanced Class A Charlotte and Rivero 8-8, 3.41 in 27 games (21 starts) at Class A Bowling Green; both were chosen for the All-Star Futures Game.

Among eligible players not protected were infielder Cole Figueroa and first baseman/outfielder Leslie Anderson.

In other Rays news:

• Reliever Joel Peralta's two-year, $6 million deal — with salaries of $3 million in 2013 and 2014 — was finalized, and it came with a twist.

In return for giving Peralta, who turns 37 in March, the second year he wanted to come back, the Rays got three one-year team options — through 2017 — at a salary of $2.5 million, with no buyouts.

Though it may be unlikely the Rays will pick up the options given Peralta's age, it is unusual, though not unprecedented, to have no buyout attached.

"We love Joel's competitiveness and the impact he has on the younger pitchers in our bullpen," Rays executive vice president Andrew Friedman said in a statement. "He has been an integral part of our late-inning success and has proven that he can get big outs in the American League East."

Peralta was 2-6 with a 3.63 ERA and a career-high 84 strikeouts last season, allowing a .200 batting average and .254 on-base percentage while making 76 appearances, second most in the AL. His 147 games over the past two seasons led the league.

Marc Topkin can be reached at [email protected]

Rays spring training schedule

The spring training schedule features 17 games in Port Charlotte starting Feb. 23 and a March 30 finale at Tropicana Field vs. Detroit.

Prices run from $10 for berm/boardwalk general admission to $27. Season-ticket deposits are being accepted; single-game sales will start in January at a date to be determined.

Spring training opens Feb. 12, a longer run in 2013 due to the World Baseball Classic.


23Pirates (ss)at Port Charlotte1:05 p.m.
23Red Sox (ss)Fort Myers1:05 p.m.
24Twinsat Fort Myers1:05 p.m.
25Red Soxat Port Charlotte1:05 p.m.
26Astrosat Port Charlotte1:05 p.m.
27Piratesat Bradenton1:05 p.m.
28Tigersat Port Charlotte1:05 p.m.


1Blue Jaysat Dunedin1:05 p.m.
2Oriolesat Port Charlotte1:05 p.m.
3Twinsat Port Charlotte1:05 p.m.
4Red Soxat Fort Myers1:05 p.m.
5Twinsat Fort Myers1:05 p.m.
7Piratesat Bradenton1:05 p.m.
8Philliesat Port Charlotte1:05 p.m.
9Philliesat Clearwater1:05 p.m.
10Red Soxat Port Charlotte1:05 p.m.
11Twinsat Port Charlotte7:05 p.m.
12Yankeesat Port Charlotte1:05 p.m.
14Oriolesat Sarasota1:05 p.m.
15Philliesat Port Charlotte1:05 p.m.
16Red Soxat Port Charlotte1:05 p.m.
17Red Soxat Fort Myers1:05 p.m.
19Tigersat Lakeland1:05 p.m.
20Twinsat Fort Myers7:05 p.m.
21Blue Jaysat Port Charlotte1:05 p.m.
22Orioles (ss)at Port Charlotte1:05 p.m.
22Pirates (ss)at Bradenton1:05 p.m.
23Twinsat Port Charlotte1:05 p.m.
24Yankeesat Tampa1:05 p.m.
25Piratesat Port Charlotte7:05 p.m.
26Philliesat Clearwater1:05 p.m.
27Blue Jaysat Port Charlotte1:05 p.m.
28Oriolesat Sarasota7:05 p.m.
29Tigersat Lakeland1:05 p.m.
30Tigersat Tropicana Field1:10 p.m.

Rays nearing decision on Venters

Rays nearing decision on Venters

Yankees second baseman Neil Walker was headed to the batting cage Monday for a little pre-batting practice when he was stopped and asked what, if anything, did he remember from his two career at-bats against Jonny Venters."He was filthy," Walker, hit...
Updated: 7 hours ago
Rays journal: Curt Casali returns to Rays via minor-league deal

Rays journal: Curt Casali returns to Rays via minor-league deal

PORT CHARLOTTE — The Rays solved one problem Wednesday — catching depth at Triple A — when they agreed to a minor-league deal with C Curt Casali.Casali, who played with the Rays during parts of the past four seasons, will return to ...
Updated: 11 hours ago
For starters: Rays vs. Red Sox

For starters: Rays vs. Red Sox

No rain in the forecast today for the Rays. Just sunny skies and those Red Sox, who are making the ride up I-75 for the 1:05 p.m. start at Charlotte Sports Park.The Rays are running out a lineup that could be used often during the regular season. The...
Published: 03/21/18
Former Ray Alex Cobb agrees to deal with AL East rival Orioles

Former Ray Alex Cobb agrees to deal with AL East rival Orioles

By Eduardo A. EncinaThe Baltimore Sun (TNS)SARASOTA — With fewer than 10 days to go until opening day, the Orioles are nearing their biggest upgrade of the offseason: a deal with former Tampa Bay Rays right-hander Alex Cobb, according to an ind...
Published: 03/20/18
Rays OF Mallex Smithís hamstring passes test

Rays OF Mallex Smithís hamstring passes test

SARASOTA — OF Mallex Smith's chances of being ready by opening day took a positive step Tuesday when he had five at-bats during a minor-league game."Everything came out with flying colors," manager Kevin Cash said.Smith tested his tight ri...
Published: 03/20/18
Raysí Matt Andriese: A starter in bullpen land

Raysí Matt Andriese: A starter in bullpen land

PORT CHARLOTTE — If Matt Andriese had a team-issued business card it would read: Multi-inning/high-leverage relief pitcher. But before handing it to you, he would take a pen and add one more role: starting pitcher.Andriese considers himself all...
Published: 03/20/18
Rays-Orioles rained out

Rays-Orioles rained out

The Rays-Orioles game at Ed Smith Stadium in Sarasota has been rained out.RHP Nate Eovaldi had been scratched from his scheduled start in the event the game did begin but was shortened by rain. Eovaldi was expected to pitch six innings or throw 90 pi...
Published: 03/20/18
Rays journal: Donít expect to see too much of Colome in the 8th inning this year

Rays journal: Donít expect to see too much of Colome in the 8th inning this year

TAMPA – The Rays were not shy about using closer Alex Colome in the eighth inning last season, and he had more success than one would realize, given all the runners that seemed to be on base.Colome led the majors with six saves of our or more o...
Published: 03/19/18
Why pitching is now Ďpersonalí for Rays lefty Blake Snell

Why pitching is now Ďpersonalí for Rays lefty Blake Snell

PORT CHARLOTTE — Blake Snell is making his best pitch.Not the 95-mph fastball at the knees that opposing batters flail at. Nor the slow curve that leaves them trudging back to the dugout.This is the one where he stands at his locker in the Rays...
Published: 03/19/18
For starters: Rays at Yankees, 6:35, with Blake Snell on mound

For starters: Rays at Yankees, 6:35, with Blake Snell on mound

The Rays head north to face the Yankees tonight in the first of back-to-back night games.LHP Blake Snell, impressive thus far in camp, will be on the mound, followed by two of the pitchers with set jobs in the bullpen, RHP Matt Andriese and RHP Alex ...
Published: 03/19/18