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Rays Report

Tampa Bay Rays: J.P. Howell hopes haircut changes luck; Rays' Twitter followers invited to gather at Trop; stat shows Rays not rewarding their pitchers' quality starts

Rays vs. Blue Jays

When/where: 12:10 today; Tropicana Field, St. Petersburg

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

Starting pitchers:


RH Wade Davis (8-7, 4.62)


LH Brett Cecil (4-4, 4.34)

Watch for ...

Wading in: Davis settled down after a five-run first in Oakland last week to get the win, his first in his past four starts. He has allowed 15 runs in his past three outings and is 2-2 with a 2.80 ERA in five career starts vs. Jays.

Leaning left: Cecil's on a roll, having won back-to-back starts — both against the Rangers — and allowing one earned run over 16 combined innings. He's 4-2, 4.69 in eight career appearances (seven starts) vs. Rays.

Key matchups

Rays vs. Cecil

Evan Longoria 9-for-17

B.J. Upton 3-for-17

Ben Zobrist 4-for-16, HR

Jays vs. Davis

Aaron Hill 5-for-13, HR

Yunel Escobar 4-for-11

Jose Bautista 1-for-13

On deck

Friday: A's, 7:10 p.m., Sun Sports. Rays — Jeff Niemann (5-4, 3.51); A's — Guillermo Moscoso (4-5, 3.41)

Saturday: A's, 7:10 p.m., Sun Sports. Rays — Alex Cobb (3-1, 2.79); A's — Brandon McCarthy (4-5, 3.58)

Sunday: A's, 1:40 p.m., Sun Sports. Rays — Jeremy Hellickson (10-7, 3.15); A's — Trevor Cahill (9-10, 3.91)

Haircut of the day

LHP J.P. Howell decided to cut off a lot of his long locks on Monday's off day, saying he "needed a change." Howell, who entered Wednesday's game with an 8.68 ERA, originally thought of shaving it all off but instead had 4-5 inches clipped. He admitted his wife, Heather, likely would not have liked the bald look. "God, she would have freaked out," Howell said, smiling.

Tweet up

The Rays will try to unite the Twitter followers of their team — and players — in their first Tweet-Up during today's game. Fans can buy $50 tickets to be in the same Papa John's Bullpen box, a deal that includes food, drinks and a postgame Q&A with CNBC business reporter Darren Rovell. Go to with promo code "tweet".

Number of the day

17 Times the Rays have lost a game after the Rays' starting pitcher turned in a quality start, second behind only the Angels (18).

Tampa Bay Rays: J.P. Howell hopes haircut changes luck; Rays' Twitter followers invited to gather at Trop; stat shows Rays not rewarding their pitchers' quality starts 08/03/11 [Last modified: Wednesday, August 3, 2011 11:10pm]
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  1. Marc Topkin's takeaways from Wednesday's Rays-Blue Jays game

    The Heater

    The Austin Pruitt experiment might be over, or at least be put on pause. After allowing six runs over seven innings to Seattle on Friday, the rookie didn't get through the fourth Wednesday, giving up five runs on four homers. ERA for past six starts: 5.29.

  2. Rays journal: Homer-happiness returns against Blue Jays

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — The Rays are back to hitting home runs, which was the norm of the offense for much of the season before the offense went cold.

    Adeiny Hechavarria greets teammate Kevin Kiermaier after his home run during the third inning at the Trop.
  3. Jones: Stop talking and start building a new Rays stadium

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — It was good to see Major League Baseball commissioner Rob Manfred at Tropicana Field on Wednesday, talking Rays baseball and the hope for a new stadium somewhere in Tampa Bay.

    Commissioner Rob Manfred is popular with the media on a visit to Tropicana Field.
  4. Rays vs. Blue Jays, 1:10 p.m. Thursday, Tropicana Field

    The Heater

    Today: vs. Blue Jays

    1:10, Tropicana Field

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

    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)
  5. Browns to start rookie QB DeShone Kizer vs. Bucs


    BEREA, Ohio — DeShone Kizer will be next through the Browns' quarterback turnstile.

    He doesn't want it to spin again soon.

    Browns rookie QB DeShone Kizer, left, will start vs. the Bucs on Saturday. He will be Cleveland’s 27th starter since 1999.