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Rays Report

Tampa Bay Rays: Jose Molina sees similarities between Rays, 2002 world champion Angels; Rays deemed baseball's most imposing team by one writer

Rays vs. Royals

When/where: 7:10 tonight; Tropicana Field

TV/radio: Sun Sports; 620-AM, 680-AM (Spanish)

Tickets: $9-210, available at Tropicana Field box office, Ticketmaster, raysbaseball.com, team Tampa store; $3 surcharge within 5 hours of game time.

Probable pitchers

Rays: LH David Price (16-4, 2.39)

ROYALs: RH Luke Hochevar (7-11, 5.24)

On Price: He has continued to roll in his Cy-Young worthy season, having not lost in his last 11 starts, and lasted at least seven innings in each of them. He is 1-0 with a 1.93 ERA in three career appearances (two starts) against Kansas City.

On Hochevar: He's winless in his past three but allowed just three runs over seven innings his last time out against Oakland. He is 2-2 with a 5.72 ERA in seven career starts against Tampa Bay.

Key matchups

Rays VS. HOCHEVar

Matt Joyce 2-for-10, 2 HRs

B.J. Upton 7-for-20

E. Longoria 6-for-13, 2 HRs

Royals vs. price

Billy Butler 2-for-6

Alex Gordon 0-for-3

Brayan Pena 1-for-2

On deck

Wednesday: vs. Royals, 1:10, Sun Sports. Rays — James Shields (11-7, 4.03); Royals — Luis Mendoza (7-8, 4.36)

Thursday: vs. A's, 7:10, Sun Sports. Rays — Alex Cobb (7-8, 4.74); A's — TBA

Friday: vs. A's, 7:10, Sun Sports. Rays — Matt Moore (10-7, 3.57); A's — TBA

Joe Smith, Times staff writer

Comparison of the day

C Jose Molina, who was honored as part of the 2002 Angels World Series championship team over the weekend, said there are a lot of similarities between that club and the current Rays. "Because no one gives us a chance," Molina said. "And when no one gives us a chance, we put a little bit extra out there. We tell ourselves that we're going to show people that we're really here."

AL race for wild cards

Team W L Pct. GB

Tampa Bay 68 54 .557

Oakland 65 55 .542—*

Baltimore 66 56 .541—

Detroit 64 57 .529 11/2

Los Angeles 62 60 .508 4

* Late game not included

What they're saying

"If you're thinking about October, no team looks more imposing than the Rays."

MLB.com columnist Richard Justice, who writes the Rays "appear to be the best team in baseball."

Tampa Bay Rays: Jose Molina sees similarities between Rays, 2002 world champion Angels; Rays deemed baseball's most imposing team by one writer 08/20/12 [Last modified: Monday, August 20, 2012 11:09pm]
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