Make us your home page
Instagram

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' Evan Longoria concerned about effect of Tropicana Field turf on hamstrings

PORT CHARLOTTE — Evan Longoria's sole goal for this season is to play all 162 games, and he worked extensively this winter on strengthening his hamstrings to increase his chances.

But there's one factor he can't control: the wear and tear of the turf at Tropicana Field.

Longoria joined LF Carl Crawford in identifying the turf (which sits on a concrete base) as an issue in staying healthy.

"The turf on your lower back and hamstrings is really tough," Longoria said upon reporting to camp. "So that was my biggest focus this offseason. I did a lot of pushing and pulling stuff, training the hamstring. I did a lot of resisted running to kind of build that up.

"It's definitely different. We go on the road and play for 10 days and you feel good and then you come back on the turf for a couple days and you definitely feel it in your hamstrings. If that can be prevented, I tried to do as much as I could this offseason."

His hope is to be in the lineup for every game. "I worked as hard as I could this offseason to get my body ready for that," he said. "Hopefully if I play all those, down at the end of the season we'll be in a good spot and make a playoff run again."

He wanted to do so last season but missed two April games when his grandmother died, then six starts from May 31-June 7 due to hamstring tightness.

Overall, Longoria said liked the additions the Rays made and their chances. "I think they made the right moves," he said.

PAT THE BAT: Pat Burrell's chances of rebounding from his poor 2009 will be a major key to the Rays success. First impressions were good as Burrell showed up Sunday in what looked to be very good shape.

"He looks good, really good," said Longoria, who worked out with Burrell at Arizona's Athletes Performance Institute. "He works out like an animal, so it was good. We kind of pushed each other the whole offseason. He gets after it."

FREE WILLY: Manager Joe Maddon said he'd like to get more at-bats for Willy Aybar (who had 324 in 2008, 296 last year) , but also that his overall defense needs to improve and he no longer will be used at second after making five errors and several other miscues in 28 games there.

"I love having him," Maddon said. "We like him at third, we like him at first, we like him at DH. We like him at the plate. He's just a professional hitter."

Aybar said the right wrist he sprained in winter ball is healed and won't limit him during camp.

MISCELLANY: LHP Jake McGee rejoined the team after spending much of Saturday at an area hospital with his wife, Morgan, who was treated and released. … SS Jason Bartlett was also back after missing the FanFest to attend to his son and sick wife, who was at the same hospital. … Only six position players haven't reported: Carl Crawford, Elliot Johnson, Carlos Peña, Sean Rodriguez, Ben Zobrist and non-roster Angel Chavez. … Maddon and the coaches started their individual precamp meetings with each player. … C Dioner Navarro and RHP Rafael Soriano, who missed previous workouts, were feeling better, Maddon said.

Tampa Bay Rays' Evan Longoria concerned about effect of Tropicana Field turf on hamstrings 02/21/10 [Last modified: Sunday, February 21, 2010 9:33pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Rays vs. Orioles, 12:10 p.m. Wednesday, Tropicana Field

    Sports

    Today: vs. Orioles

    12:10, Tropicana Field

    TV/radio: Fox Sports Sun; 620-AM

    Tickets: $15-$275; available at Tropicana Field box office, raysbaseball.com, surcharge of up to $5 within 5 hours of game time.

    PORT CHARLOTTE, FL - FEBRUARY 18:  Alex Cobb #53 of the Tampa Bay Rays poses for a portrait during the Tampa Bay Rays photo day on February 18, 2017 at Charlotte Sports Park in Port Charlotte, Floida.  (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
  2. Bruce Arena blends intense demands with humor to lead U.S. soccer

    Soccer

    SANTA CLARA, Calif. — Bruce Arena bites his fingernails religiously, a habit he has had since age 10.

    Among some other unmentionables.

    Bruce Arena
  3. Red state: Yes, Bill O'Reilly is a Bucs fan

    Blogs

    TAMPA -- The question was simple enough for Bucs fans: Why is former Fox News personality Bill O'Reilly wearing a red Bucs polo?

    O'Reilly was wearing the polo during a few video clips from his "No Spin News" podcast posted on his website Monday, which was exciting news for some Bucs fans and not-so-exciting …

    Former Fox News personality Bill O'Reilly was sporting a red Bucs polo during his "No Spin News" video podcast Monday. An assistant said the shirt was given to him by former Bucs tight end Dave Moore.
  4. For starters: Slumping LoMo, Dickerson not in Rays lineup tonight vs LHP

    Blogs

    1B Logan Morrison and LF Corey Dickerson, two of the main slumpers in the Rays lineup, are not in tonight's lineup with the Orioles throwing LHP Wade Miley.

    Logan Morrison is 0-for-12 on this homestand.
  5. Ex-Buc Booger McFarland becomes ABC college football analyst

    Blogs

    Former Bucs defensive lineman Booger McFarland is continuing his broadcasting rise by joining ABC's studio coverage for the upcoming college football season, ESPN announced Tuesday.

    Former Bucs lineman Booger McFarland (No. 92) will become an ABC studio analyst this college football season.