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 pitcher Wade Davis earns top rookie honors for July

ST. PETERSBURG — RHP Wade Davis' turnaround from an 0-5 June to a 4-0 July won him the American League rookie of the month award.

And if he were to start this month the same way in today's matinee, he'd net an interesting distinction for his team: having five starters with 10 or more wins in the first week of August.

"That would be very impressive," pitching coach Jim Hickey said.

As it is, the Rays are the only team with four. And only five teams have more than two: the Angels, Red Sox, White Sox, Twins and Yankees.

Davis wasn't the only Rays pitcher honored for his July work: Closer Rafael Soriano won the MLB delivery man of the month award after logging an MLB-best 11 saves while posting a 2.57 ERA. Soriano, who also won the May award, has 31 saves, matching San Francisco's Brian Wilson for most in the majors.

Davis, 24, leads AL rookies with nine wins and a .263 opponents average and is second with a 4.09 ERA, 91 strikeouts and 121 innings. He could end up a strong candidate for the AL rookie of the year award, competing with Detroit OFs Austin Jackson and Brennan Boesch and Cleveland RHP Mitch Talbot.

He took news of the monthly award the same way he takes most everything else, which is to say with little reaction. "It's cool," he said. "It was a good month. Now I have to go out and win another one, or a couple more."

Hickey said he didn't get much more out of Davis when they talked during batting practice.

"I told him let's do the same thing in August and the same thing in September, and he was on the same page with that," Hickey said. "You know he's an extremely, extremely quiet and humble type of a guy, so he didn't really have much to say about it. But certainly I'm sure he's proud of himself and we're proud of him, too."

Davis is the fourth Ray to win the award, joining Rocco Baldelli (April and May 2003), Damon Hollins (May 2005) and Evan Longoria (June 2008).

PEÑA PENDING: 1B Carlos Peña showed enough progress with his right foot injury during a workout that the Rays say he could be available to pinch-hit today and return to the lineup by Saturday in Toronto, though perhaps limited to DH duty.

Peña has been sidelined since leaving Saturday's game with what has been diagnosed as a slight tear in the plantar fascia ligament. He said the doctors told him the injury can't be made worse, so recovery is primarily a matter of pain tolerance.

"Now it's all about mind over matter," he said. "I'm going to keep on pushing it and see how far I can do without passing out."

Peña has been adamant that he wouldn't need to go on the 15-day DL, and manager Joe Maddon concurred, barring a setback. "It looks like it's trending in the right direction," he said.

GETTING RELIEF: Tuesday night's work gave the Rays an AL-best 3.12 bullpen ERA, and Maddon is planning cautious handling to ensure the relievers — specifically setup man Joaquin Benoit (an MLB-best 0.70 ERA) and Soriano, who got Wednesday off — stay strong.

"It's incumbent upon me as a manager and us working internally to make sure that we don't abuse that," he said. "We have two regular-season months left, and we have another hopeful month of (postseason) play … and I really have got to be careful how I use these guys coming down the road now.

"We're in a pretty good position, and you don't want to lose that position, but, again, you've got to be smart about how you use these guys."

MISCELLANY: LF Carl Crawford failed to get the triple he needed to join Ty Cobb as the only players with 400 steals and 100 triples before age 29. … Ben Zobrist returned to the lineup at first base after missing 6½ games with a stiff back. … The start of the game was delayed 16 minutes when a lightning strike near the Trop knocked out some of the lights. … On Rocco Baldelli Moustache Night in Port Charlotte, Baldelli was 2-for-4 for the Stone Crabs.

Tampa Bay Rays pitcher Wade Davis earns top rookie honors for July 08/04/10 [Last modified: Thursday, August 5, 2010 12:58am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Bucs-Jaguars: Five things to watch Thursday in Jacksonville


    JACKSONVILLE — The Bucs have their second preseason game here Thursday against the Jaguars, and here are five things to keep an eye on as Tampa Bay moves closer to paring its roster from 90 players to 53 by Sept. 3.


    Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Jameis Winston (3) participates in training camp at One Buccaneer Place in Tampa, Fla., on Wednesday, Aug. 2, 2017. LOREN ELLIOTT   |   Times
  2. We knew Aguayo was a goner, and 'Hard Knocks' still delivers


    Tuesday night's second installment of Hard Knocks, the HBO show that is going behind the scenes at training camp with the Bucs, had plenty of interesting tidbits, revelations and insights.

    Tampa Bay Buccaneers kicker Roberto Aguayo (19) kicks during training camp at One Buccaneer Place in Tampa, Fla., on Wednesday, Aug. 2, 2017. LOREN ELLIOTT   |   Times
  3. For starters: Rays at Jays, with a different look to lineup


    UPDATE, 6:40: Former Rays reliever LHP J.P. Howell was DFA'd today by the Blue Jays; he had a 7.36 ERA in 16 games.

    Daniel Robertson is expected to make a third straight start tonight, likely at shortstop.
  4. What you might have missed in the second episode of the Bucs on 'Hard Knocks'


    We're back for another episode of The Annotated Hard Knocks, trying to find behind-the-scenes insights and things you might have missed in Tuesday's second episode of "Hard Knocks," following the Bucs in …

    As the crowd recognized him and got loud, Jameis Winston jumped up and down in celebration. [GREG AUMAN | Times]
  5. Why Noah Spence could be the Bucs' X-factor


    JACKSONVILLE — Noah Spence crouched in a four-point stance, bending low like a sprinter in starting blocks. At the snap, he took one step to his right, startling Jaguars left tackle Josh Wells with his explosiveness. Wells went for the move and Spence countered with an inside swim move, flying past Wells' right …

    Tampa Bay Buccaneers defensive end Noah Spence (57) participates in training camp at One Buccaneer Place in Tampa, Fla., on Wednesday, Aug. 2, 2017. LOREN ELLIOTT   |   Times