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' Evan Longoria models his workouts after ex-Ray Eric Hinske

PORT CHARLOTTE — Though veteran OF Eric Hinske is no longer a Ray, his impact is still felt in the clubhouse.

Just ask 3B Evan Longoria.

Longoria was back to his usual routine Thursday, one day after he left a workout early with lingering discomfort from a wisdom tooth extraction. That routine, from his approach in batting practice to his preparation, was molded a lot by Hinske, who signed with the Pirates in the offseason. Longoria, 23, heeded Hinske's advice — "Never pass up your first fortune" — when he signed his long-term contract extension last season and sees Hinske's handprint on his daily activities.

"He was the perfect guy for me to model myself after," Longoria said. "The thing I do use every day, which I got from him, is my routine, in the cage. We went over it day in and day out. And it's never changed."

Longoria might not have to change his spring schedule, either, as he said it's his "assumption" he won't be playing for Team USA in the World Baseball Classic. Longoria, on the provisional roster, said he last spoke with manager Davey Johnson a week ago but hasn't heard since about his status. Final rosters have to be in by Tuesday, and with veteran 3Bs Chipper Jones and David Wright already on the roster, "I think they're just gonna go based off seniority," Longoria said.

"Those guys were chosen before me, and I think if they want to play, they're probably going to be the two guys that'll be on the roster," he said.

Take it easy: LH reliever J.P. Howell, who plans to play for the United States in the World Baseball Classic next month, said his spring workouts haven't changed dramatically as he prepares for it. Howell said the biggest thing is he takes just one day off between bullpens, instead of two. But Howell, 25, who had a breakout season last year in which he tied for the major-league lead in relief innings (891/3), said knowing how he felt in October last year has helped him stay careful in not going full throttle so early.

"It's been easy because I look at how long the season is," Howell said. "Since I know that, I know not to just go after it right from the shoot, 'cause I know it will get me in the end. It'll bite me."

Quotable: OF Matt Joyce, on throwing out the first pitch tonight at 6:30 for the North Brandon Little League, where the former Armwood standout used to play as a kid: "I might throw a curveball," Joyce said, smiling. "Or a knuckleball."

Miscellany: RHP Juan Salas, designated for assignment Feb. 12, has been traded to the Indians for minor-league 2B Isaias Velasquez, who hit .281 with 40 runs in 64 games for Class A Mahoning Valley. … INF Ray Olmedo, a minor-league invitee whose arrival was delayed due to visa issues, was in camp Thursday. … Manager Joe Maddon said the team might do live batting practice in Saturday's workout.

Joe Smith can be reached at

Tampa Bay Rays' Evan Longoria models his workouts after ex-Ray Eric Hinske 02/19/09 [Last modified: Friday, February 20, 2009 7:10am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Rays journal: Erasmo Ramirez ready to start a day after closing game

    The Heater

    MINNEAPOLIS — RHP Erasmo Ramirez was on the mound to finish Sunday's 15-inning marathon win over the Twins and will start tonight's game against the Rangers.

    The Rays’ Erasmo Ramirez throws 12 pitches in the 15th inning against the Twins to earn the save then says after the game that he’s ready to make his scheduled start against the Rangers: “My arm feels good.”
  2. Rays exhausted but happy after 15-inning win over Twins (w/video)

    The Heater

    MINNEAPOLIS — Before the Rays eventually won Sunday's 6½-hour, 15-inning marathon against the Twins 8-6, they did plenty to lose it. And we need to get that out of the way first.

    The Rays’ Evan Longoria enjoys a laugh after scoring, barely, to tie it in the ninth on Steven Souza Jr.’s two-out single.
  3. Tom Jones' Two Cents: ABC's Indy 500 coverage is stellar again

    TV and Radio

    Times columnist Tom Jones looks back at the best and worst from a weekend of televised sports.

    Best coverage

    Takuma Sato left, celebrates after winning the Indianapolis 500 as Helio Castroneves is a little late passing him. ABC’s coverage of the race is stellar throughout, with plenty of extras but no fake drama.
  4. Takuma Sato surprise winner of wreck-filled Indy 500

    Auto racing

    INDIANAPOLIS — Takuma Sato, a journeyman driver, became the first Japanese winner of the Indianapolis 500 on Sunday when he held off three-time champion Helio Castroneves in a 230-mph wheel-rubbing duel to the finish.

    Scott Dixon’s car goes over the top of Jay Howard, soaring so high that Helio Castroneves drove under it while it was airborne. Stunningly, there were no serious injuries.
  5. Marc Topkin's takeaways from Sunday's Rays-Twins game

    The Heater

    The Rays won because they got two innings of good relief from each of the two pitchers who contributed to them losing Saturday's game, Danny Farquhar (who again struck out Miguel Sano) and Tommy Hunter, who both posted zeroes.