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SPRING TRAINING

Tampa Bay Rays: Feast of the day, B Street note of the day

Feast of the day, part 1

Reid Brignac's parents, Linda and Phillip, and five friends brought a Cajun feast all the way from Louisiana to Port Charlotte, setting up their pots Sunday morning and cooking for 100, serving jambalaya, red beans and sausage, boudin (a meat and rice mix sausage) and white chocolate bread pudding. They'd done the same with several of Reid's minor-league teams. "This is what we do," Linda said. "It's part of our life. Everyone gets together and eats."

Feast of the day, part 2

The players couldn't have enjoyed it more, especially the bread pudding. "Guys were going around trying to make trades for more," INF Elliot Johnson said, "like you used to do in the (school) lunchroom back in the day." LHP David Price went so far as to tell players it was bad and offer to throw it out for them.

B-Street note of the day

Manager Joe Maddon addressed the crowd from side-stage (but didn't sing) toward the end of a 2-hour postgame concert by the B-Street Band. Band leader Willy Forte said Maddon, his childhood friend, is the reason he has had this gig for 31 years. "We were sitting in his car," Forte explained, "and he pops in this 8-track and you've got to listen to this guy from New Jersey, you should play his music."

Additional musical note of the day

The Beelzebubs, a men's a cappella group from Tufts University, will perform between innings at tonight's game. There was talk Sunday that Rays TV man Todd Kalas might join them.

Quote of the day

"It's good to lead the league in something."

LHP R.J. Swindle, a non-roster bullpen candidate who has a majors-high 10 spring appearances.

Rays vs. Yankees

When/where: 7:05 tonight; Charlotte Sports Park, 2300 El Jobean Road, Port Charlotte

TV/radio: Fox Sports Florida; 620-AM

Tickets: Limited number of $10 berm/boardwalk remained as of Sunday evening. Available through raysbaseball.com and Ticketmaster, at Tropicana Field and Charlotte Sports Park box offices and Tampa team store.

Gates open: 4 p.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 left.

Parking: $10, lots open at 3.

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

Pitchers: Rays — Jeremy Hellickson, Kyle Farnsworth, Juan Cruz, Joel Peralta; Yankees — Bartolo Colon, Delin Betances, David Robertson

Heads-up

Cruz has made an impressive bid for a job, posting six scoreless outings (one hit, five walks).

Who is this Ray?

He was a 2001 second-round pick by Boston. He played at Baylor University and was the 2001 Big 12 player of the year and a first-team All-American, He would like to be a high school football coach. He was acquired in trade.

On deck

Tuesday: at Red Sox (Fort Myers), 7:05. Rays — David Price; Red Sox — John Lackey

Upcoming schedule

22: at Red Sox

23: Phillies

24: at Astros

25: Pirates

26: Orioles

27: at Pirates

28: at Yankees, 7:05

29: at Red Sox

30: vs. Blue Jays at Tropicana Field, 4:10

Who is this Ray answer: C Kelly Shoppach

Marc Topkin, Times staff writer

Tampa Bay Rays: Feast of the day, B Street note of the day 03/20/11 [Last modified: Sunday, March 20, 2011 8:51pm]
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