Make us your home page

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

(View our Privacy Policy)

Tampa Bay Rays' David Price pitcher hurt after toweling off too vigorously

PORT CHARLOTTE — If nothing else, Rays pitcher David Price might have cleaned up in the race for oddest injury of the spring.

Price was forced to leave Thursday's game with a neck spasm after toweling himself off too vigorously.


Call it over-toweling.

Price claimed he was simply drying his head in the dugout after his second inning against the Tigers and, well, let's just let him tell it.

"The towel just catches the back of my head, and it pulls my neck forward," he said. "I just felt it a little bit in back of my neck and just wanted to be cautious with it.

"There's a little pop, and it just spasms up and gets a little tight."

Amazingly, Price said this has happened to him twice before — last spring and in September — and it usually takes 2-3 days to work itself out.

Naturally, Rays manager Joe Maddon had some suggestions to avoid such issues in the future:

• The athletic training staff serves as "cornermen," like legendary boxing trainer Angelo Dundee, for Price: "Get in there, towel him down, get in his face, the shroud of David, that kind of thing. Let's stop having him towel himself down. We have plenty of people that can do that here."

• More instruction and repetition such as how legendary basketball coach John Wooden had his players practice putting on their socks to avoid blisters: "David might need better technique when it comes to toweling himself down. He's been doing it for 20-some years now but apparently doesn't have it down yet."

• Put it in the hands of home clubhouse/equipment manager Chris Westmoreland: "We might need more fabric softener in the towels."

Price, who said he felt the best he had all spring on the mound, ended up throwing 38 pitches (24 strikes) over two innings, one less than scheduled. Neither he nor Maddon expect his schedule to be disrupted, though the incident was frustrating.

But not enough, of course, to throw in the towel.

Marc Topkin can be reached at

Rays left-hander David Price shows head athletic trainer Ron Porterfield where his neck hurts after toweling off too vigorously.


Rays left-hander David Price shows head athletic trainer Ron Porterfield where his neck hurts after toweling off too vigorously.

Tampa Bay Rays' David Price pitcher hurt after toweling off too vigorously 03/08/12 [Last modified: Thursday, March 8, 2012 10:05pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Bucs Cannon Fodder podcast: Key roster battles


    Greg Auman looks ahead to tonight's third episode of HBO's "Hard Knocks," and talks about key roster battles that could shift with the Bucs' third preseason game Saturday night against the Browns on our …

    Bucs running back Jacquizz Rodgers (32) is hit by middle linebacker Kwon Alexander (58) while running the ball during training camp. [LOREN ELLIOTT   |   Times]
  2. Rays series preview: Who are the Blue Jays?


    Last week, the Rays faced the Blue Jays in the Rogers Centre, dropping three of four. This week, they'll play three games at Tropicana Field. Here's the information you need to know about Toronto before the action kicks off.

    Third baseman Josh Donaldson hit four home runs in as many games against the Rays last week.
  3. And the most-searched NFL player in Florida is ...


    The Bucs just faced the Jacksonville Jaguars in preseason, and open their 2017 season at the Miami Dolphins. So with the state's NFL competition ahead of and just behind the Bucs, who do you think is the NFL player most searched on Google by Floridians?

    Fans react with excitement moments after the Bucs announce their first-round pick at the team's 2016 NFL draft party. [LOREN ELLIOTT | Times]
  4. 5 miles and a lot of emotion between Sickles, Alonso


    TAMPA — From one campus to another, the distance between Sickles and Alonso high schools is 5.4 miles.

    New Alonso coach Reggie Crume spent three years at Palm Harbor University, so he knows a little something about neighborhood rivalries. (Douglas R. Clifford, Times)
  5. Kevin Kiermaier was moved to the top of the order to provide a spark to a flatlining offense.