Rays Report

Tampa Bay Rays: David Price surprises Twitter follower; Price, dog get figurine

Rays vs. Mariners

When/where: 1:40 today; Tropicana Field, St. Petersburg

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

Starting pitchers:

RAYS:

RH James Shields (11-10, 2.83)

MARINERS:

RH Michael Pineda (9-7, 3.77)

Tickets: $12-$255 at box office, Ticketmaster, raysbaseball.com, team store in Tampa; $3 surcharge within five hours of game.

Promotion: David Price/Astro figurine for first 10,000 kids 14 and younger.

Watch for …

Complete Game James: Shields is coming off a three-hitter in Boston that was his MLB-leading ninth complete game, but also a loss. He is 3-4, 3.56 in 10 starts vs. M's, roughed up (four HRs) June 2 in Seattle.

Tall order: Pineda — who is 6 feet 7, 260 pounds and 22 years old — has been impressive, ranking first among AL rookies in strikeouts (133) and opponents' average (.205) and second in ERA. He beat the Rays on July 30.

Key matchups

Rays vs. Pineda

Johnny Damon 0-for-2

Casey Kotchman 0-for-3

Ben Zobrist 1-for-3

M's vs. Shields

Franklin Gutierrez7-for-21, HR

Adam Kennedy 5-for-16

Ichiro Suzuki 11-for-33, HR

On deck

Monday: vs. Tigers, 7:10, Sun Sports. Rays — Jeff Niemann (8-4, 3.29); Tigers — Justin Verlander (18-5, 2.31)

Tuesday: vs. Tigers, 7:10, Sun Sports. Rays — David Price (11-10, 3.59); Tigers — Brad Penny (8-9, 4.97)

Wednesday: vs. Tigers, 7:10, Sun Sports. Rays — Wade Davis (8-7, 4.43); Tigers — Max Scherzer (13-7, 4.23)

Marc Topkin, Times staff writer

David Price note of the day

Already one of the most Twitter-friendly pro athletes, LHP David Price (@DAVIDPrice14) took it next level Saturday when he responded to a request from a fan, @trickynicky4 (Nicholas Gilbert, a U of Cincinnati baseball recruit) who posted his phone number and asked him to call. "We talked for a few minutes," Price said. "I'll probably call a few more people. It was pretty fun."

Astro Price note of the day

The Rays are apparently making promotional history today with a David Price superhero action figure giveaway that includes his dog, Astro, the first player/pet combo. "Astro's pumped," Price said. "He's very, I guess you would say, gracious of having his own action figure." Astro, a 2½-year-old French bulldog, will get the special treat of attending today's game.

Tampa Bay Rays: David Price surprises Twitter follower; Price, dog get figurine 08/20/11 [Last modified: Saturday, August 20, 2011 11:41pm]

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