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SPRING TRAINING

Tampa Bay Rays: Tactical move of the day; Long drive of the day; Tribute of the day

Tactical move of the day

Knowing how much RHP James Shields hates to come out of games, manager Joe Maddon was on to something by sending Bucs coach Raheem Morris to make the pitching change. "That way Shields was not upset with me," Maddon said. "I may have to do that during the season."

Long drive of the day

The Rays began the day with a golf long-drive contest on a back field and, as he did during the charity tournament, CF B.J. Upton won — with a blast estimated at 310 yards, into the wind. "Ridiculous," Maddon said.

Tribute of the day

Justine Siegal, who last month became the first woman to throw batting practice to an MLB team, will visit Rays camp today in honor of Christina Green, the 9-year-old girl who was killed in the Arizona shootings.

Rays (ss) vs. Blue Jays

When/where: 1:05 today; Charlotte Sports Park, 2300 El Jobean Road, Port Charlotte

Tickets: Reserved seats $19-27, berm/boardwalk $8. Available through raysbase ball.com and Ticketmaster, at Tropicana Field and Charlotte Sports Park box offices and Tampa team store.

Gates open: 11 a.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 the left.

Parking: $10, lots open at 10.

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

Pitchers: Rays — Jeff Niemann, Cory Wade, Dane De La Rosa, Jake McGee, Cesar Ramos, Chris Archer; Jays — Brett Cecil, Scott Richmond, Shawn Camp, Jason Frasor, Jon Rauch, Frank Francisco

Heads-up

Wade is competing for one of the open bullpen jobs, as are McGee and Ramos.

Rays (ss) vs. Netherlands

When/where: 1:05 today; Al Lang Field, 180 Second Ave. SE, St. Petersburg

Tickets: $6, stpeteinternationalbaseball.com, stadium

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

Pitchers: Rays — Chris Bootcheck, Jonah Bayliss, Richard De Los Santos, Dirk Hayhurst, Brian Baker; Netherlands — Rob Cordemanas, David Bergman, Nick Stuifbergen, Leon Boyd

Who is this Ray?

His middle name is Von. He was born in Ohio and played at Kent State. He has pitched for the Padres and Jays. He likes to write. He signed as a minor-league free agent.

On deck

Thursday: Red Sox, 1:05. Rays — Andy Sonnanstine; Red Sox — Daisuke Matsuzaka

Friday: Pirates, 1:05. Rays — Wade Davis; Pirates — James McDonald

Saturday: at Phillies, 1:05. Rays — David Price; Phillies — Kyle Kendrick

Schedule 13: at Blue Jays

14: Off

15: Marlins

16: at Marlins

17: at Yankees, 7:05

18: Red Sox (ss), 7:05

19: at Twins

20: Orioles

21: Yankees, 7:05

22: at Red Sox, 7:05

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: RHP Dirk Hayhurst.

Marc Topkin, Times staff writer

Tampa Bay Rays: Tactical move of the day; Long drive of the day; Tribute of the day 03/08/11 [Last modified: Tuesday, March 8, 2011 7:19pm]
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