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Tampa Bay Rays' spring schedule includes Yankees, Red Sox, Phillies

ST. PETERSBURG — The Rays' spring training schedule, released Thursday, includes two home dates with the Red Sox and one apiece with the Yankees and World Series champion Phillies.

The Rays, spending their first spring in Port Charlotte, raised ticket prices to a range of $9 to $23 compared with $7 to $20 for the final year in St. Petersburg.

Tickets go on sale Jan. 8 with the first game at the renovated Charlotte Sports Park set for Feb. 25 against the Reds.

Some big home matchups include the Red Sox (Feb. 27 and March 7), Phillies (March 12) and Yankees (March 22). The Rays will host the Cardinals (March 19) for the first time since 1998 as well as the Puerto Rican national team (March 4) as part of preparations for the World Baseball Classic.

Although they left their longtime home of St. Petersburg, the Rays will play in the bay area for road games against the Yankees in Tampa (Feb. 26), Phillies in Clearwater (Feb. 28) and Blue Jays in Dunedin (March 13 and 20).

In addition, the Rays will visit Philadelphia for two games in the Phillies' annual "On-Deck Series" April 3-4 before starting the regular season April 6 at Boston.

Rays home games will start at 1:05 p.m. with the exception of two at 7:05 (March 4 against the Puerto Ricans and March 25 against the Pirates).

Caryn Huff, a project manager for Charlotte County, said there have been 3,000 deposits already put down for season tickets. (Packages run from $240 to $320). Those who pay the $50 deposit will be contacted in December to select seats.

Miller to Cardinals? Left-handed reliever Trever Miller was expected to sign a two-year contract with the Cardinals, pending a physical, but the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported a deal had yet to be completed as of Thursday night.

Cardinals general manager John Mozeliak told the paper there was "language" that still needed to be worked out with a potential contract.

Financial terms were not reported.

This month, the Rays declined Miller's $2-million option for 2009, making him a free agent. In his second stint with Tampa Bay, Miller, 35, went 2-0 with a 4.15 in 68 appearances last season.

Miller couldn't be reached for comment.

Roster moves: The Rays added left-hander Jake McGee and right-handers Wade Davis and Dale Thayer to their 40-man roster.

The moves prevent them from being selected in the Rule 5 draft Dec. 11.

McGee, 22, and Davis, 23, are two of the Rays' top prospects. McGee went 6-4 with a 3.94 ERA in 15 starts for Double-A Montgomery last season before suffering an elbow surgery that required Tommy John surgery.

Davis went 13-8 with a 3.47 ERA in 28 combined starts for Montgomery and Triple-A Durham and was named Montgomery's pitcher of the year.

Thayer, 27, has spent six years in the minors and is coming off a strong season for Durham in which he went 3-1 with nine saves and a 2.77 ERA.

The Rays now have 39 players on their roster.

Joe Smith can be reached at joesmith@sptimes.com.

.Fast facts

Rays spring schedule

February

25: Reds; 26: at Yankees, 1:15; 27: Red Sox; 28: at Phillies

March

1: Blue Jays; 2: at Cardinals, TBA; 3: at Astros; 4: Puerto Rico (World Baseball Classic exhibition), 7:05; 6: at Pirates; 7: Red Sox; 8: at Red Sox; 9: Twins; 10: Blue Jays; 12: Phillies; 13: at Blue Jays; 14: at Reds; 15: Pirates; 16: at Pirates, 7:05; 18: Reds; 19: Cardinals; 20: at Blue Jays; 21: at Orioles; 22: Yankees;

23: at Pirates; 25: Pirates, 7:05; 26: at Tigers, 6:05; 27: at Twins; 28: Reds; 29: at Reds; 30: at Twins; 31: at Red Sox

April

1: Twins; 3: Phillies, at Philadelphia, TBA; 4: Phillies, at Philadelphia, TBA

All games at 1:05 unless noted

For details, call (727) 825-3154 or go to raysbaseball.com/charlottecounty.

Game Tickets

Berm: $9

Baseline reserve: $16

Field reserve: $18

Baseline box: $18

Field box: $23

Season tickets

Berm: Not available

Baseline reserve: $240

Field reserve: $272

Baseline box: $272

Field box: $320

Tampa Bay Rays' spring schedule includes Yankees, Red Sox, Phillies 11/20/08 [Last modified: Thursday, November 27, 2008 1:14pm]

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