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Tampa Bay Rays: Desmond Jennings makes club spring training history, personal history as well

Going deep, deep, deep

Desmond Jennings, who hit two homers in a playoff game last year, became the first Ray to go deep three times in a spring game. Two have done it in games that counted: Jonny Gomes (July 30, 2005) and Evan Longoria (Sept. 18, 2008).

Quote of the day

"Not three over the fence."

OF Desmond Jennings, saying he'd never had a three-homer game at any level, unless they were "probably inside the park"

Rays, Chalk, Jayhawk?

Rays fans have good reason to pull for Kansas in tonight's NCAA basketball championship: The six times Kentucky has won the title, the Yankees won the World Series. Rays manager Joe Maddon, though, wasn't too concerned about the historical implications: "I really don't believe in that kind of stuff, coincidence, whatever."

Party review of the day

Maddon had good reviews for Saturday's BaseBALL Gala, which drew more than 300 to benefit the Charlotte County Boys and Girls Clubs. Rays video coordinator/concierge Chris "Chico" Fernandez stood out, wearing his plaid team Brayser jacket and blue sunglasses. "I kind of dug that," Maddon said. "Chico might have been the hit. He was the belle of the ball."

Rays vs. Twins

When/where: 1:05 today; Charlotte Sports Park, 2300 El Jobean Road, Port Charlotte

Tickets: Reserved seats $17-25, berm/boardwalk $7. Available through raysbaseball.com and Ticket­master, at Tropicana Field and Charlotte Sports Park box offices, Tampa team store

Gates open: 11 a.m.

Directions: Driving time from the bay area is 1½-2 hours. Suggested route: I-75 south to Exit 179 (Toledo Blade Road), go west 6½ miles (crossing U.S. 41) to El Jobean Road (SR 776), go right 2 miles, complex is on the left.

Parking: $10, lots open at 10:30

Rays information: Toll-free 1-888-326-7297 (FAN-RAYS)

Pitchers: Rays — David Price, J.P. Howell, relievers TBA; Twins — Francisco Liriano, Matt Capps, Glen Perkins, Brian Duensing, Alex Burnett, Kyle Waldrop, Jeff Gray

Heads-up

Price will likely go four innings/60 pitches as he tunes up for his Saturday regular-season debut.

On deck

Tuesday: at Twins, 1:05 p.m. Rays — Jeremy Hellickson; Twins — TBA

Wednesday: vs. Future Rays, 1:40 p.m., at Tropicana Field. Pitchers — TBA. Tickets $10, general admission.

Thursday: Off

Friday: Season opener, vs. Yankees, 3:10 p.m., at Tropicana Field. Rays — James Shields; Yankees — CC Sabathia. Sold out.

Who is this Ray?

He was not drafted out of high school. He studied criminology at Long Beach State. He plays the drums and takes yoga classes.

Who is this answer: 3B Evan Longoria

Marc Topkin, Times staff writer

Tampa Bay Rays: Desmond Jennings makes club spring training history, personal history as well 04/01/12 [Last modified: Sunday, April 1, 2012 8:56pm]
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