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)

Rays Report

Tampa Bay Rays: Evan Longoria looking for date with SpongeBob; Johnny Damon nears power-speed milestone

Rays at Rangers

When/where: 8:05 tonight; Rangers Ballpark in Arlington, Texas

TV/radio: Sun Sports; 970-AM, 680-AM (Spanish)

Starting pitchers:

RAYS: RH Jeff Niemann (9-5, 3.46)

RANGERS: LHP C.J. Wilson (13-6, 3.29)

Watch for …

Standing tall: Niemann has been on a roll since coming off the DL in late June: 8-1, 2.57 in 12 starts, including a Saturday win in Toronto. He goes into his first start vs. Texas unbeaten in his past eight road starts.

C.J.'s world: The eccentric Wilson has evolved from a reliever into one of the game's best starters, and he usually has plenty to say. He is 2-0, 2.88 in 15 games (two starts) against the Rays, plus an ALDS Game 2 win.

Key matchups

Rays vs. Wilson

Evan Longoria 1-for-11

B.J. Upton 0-for-10

Ben Zobrist 2-for-11

Rangers vs. Niemann

Josh Hamilton 0-for-1

Mike Napoli 5-for-10, HR

Michael Young 2-for-3

On deck

Friday: vs. Orioles, 7:10, Sun Sports. Rays — David Price (12-11, 3.40); Orioles — Zach Britton (8-9, 4.28)

Saturday: vs. Orioles, 6:10, no TV. Rays — Wade Davis (8-8, 4.52); O's — TBA

Sunday: vs. Orioles, 1:40, Sun Sports. Rays — Jeremy Hellickson (11-10, 3.01); O's — Jeremy Guthrie (6-16, 4.42)

Monday: vs. Rangers, 1:10, Sun Sports. Rays — James Shields (13-10, 2.84); Rangers — TBA

Marc Topkin, Times staff writer

Just the usual Longoria/SpongeBob note of the day

3B Evan Longoria is looking for support in his latest campaign: to be in the "lineup" against SpongeBob and other cartoon characters for the Sept. 13 "Showdown" game, part of the promo effort for the Nicktoons MLB video game. Voting runs through Sept. 7 at

Approaching milestone of the day

With two more stolen bases, Johnny Damon will become the ninth player all time with 200 homers and 400 steals. The others: Bobby and Barry Bonds, Roberto Alomar, Craig Biggio, Marquis Grissom, Rickey Henderson, Paul Molitor and Joe Morgan.

Tampa Bay Rays: Evan Longoria looking for date with SpongeBob; Johnny Damon nears power-speed milestone 08/31/11 [Last modified: Wednesday, August 31, 2011 11:17pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Rays morning after: There (really) are still reasons to be optimistic


    There are plenty of reasons to be pessimistic about the Rays' chances to get out of their extended skid and make the playoffs, including veteran 3B Evan Longoria's acknowledgement after Thursday's game that the pressures of …

    Trevor Plouffe reacts as he pops out with the bases loaded in the sixth inning against Toronto.
  2. Is Bucs kicker Nick Folk a significant upgrade over Roberto Aguayo?


    Bucs head coach Dirk Koetter made it clear.

    Bucs kicker Nick Folk is entering his 11th NFL season. He spent three seasons with the Cowboys and seven with the Jets. [LOREN ELLIOTT  |  Times]
  3. Tim Tebow Week: 12 stories from his Tampa Bay tour


    Alas, Tim Tebow Week — eight baseball games in eight nights that reunited Tebow with his Tampa Bay friends and admirers — is over. The fun ended Thursday night.

    St. Lucie Mets outfielder Tim Tebow meets fans and signs autographs before the beginning of the Mets at Threshers game at Spectrum Field on Thursday, Aug. 17, 2017 in Clearwater. DOUGLAS R. CLIFFORD   |   Times

  4. Bucs journal: Kicker Nick Folk has up and downs against Jaguars


    JACKSONVILLE — If the Bucs had hoped for a drama-free night in their kicking game, they'll have to wait another week.

    Bucs kicker Nick Folk celebrates one of his two made field goals against the Jaguars, but he also misses a field goal and has an extra point blocked.
  5. Bucs top Jaguars behind strong first half



    There is a reason why the air in Tampa Bay is filled with playoff talk. If Thursday night's 12-8 Bucs preseason win over the Jaguars is any indication, it's also going to be filled with footballs thrown by quarterback Jameis Winston.

    Doug Martin gets the Bucs’ only touchdown  on a 2-yard run, squeaking past linebacker Telvin Smith in the first quarter. He has five carries for 30 yards.