1. Sports
  2. /
  3. Rays

Yes, that’s Adam Kolarek playing first base for the Rays

The Rays, doing Rays things again, move the pitcher from the mound to the infield for a batter, then back to the mound.
The Rays tweeted a screenshot with the proof that reliever Adam Kolarek was playing first base. [Twitter/Tampa Bay Rays]
The Rays tweeted a screenshot with the proof that reliever Adam Kolarek was playing first base. [Twitter/Tampa Bay Rays]
Published Apr. 7, 2019
Updated Apr. 8, 2019

SAN FRANCISCO — Rays manager Kevin Cash got creative again Sunday, moving lefty reliever Adam Kolarek to first base for a batter so he could stay in the game and face the next two lefty hitters during the seventh inning.

The move worked, though Diego Castillo was needed to come in and replace Kolarek to get the final out.

Cash made two similar moves last year, having lefty Jose Alvarado move from the mound to play first for one batter and then go back to pitching in a game against Washington in June, and doing the same with righty Sergio Romo going to third during a game against the Yankees in July.

With the Rays leading 2-0, Kolarek— who already worked the sixth — opened the seventh, allowing a single to Yangervis Solarte.

Cash summoned Roe to face right-handed-hitting ex-Ray Evan Longoria, moving Kolarek to first, so he could go back to the mound to face lefties Brandon Belt and Brandon Crawford next.

Roe did his job by striking out Longoria. Kolarek, who was holding on the runner, went back to the mound.

Yandy Diaz moved from first to third for the Kolarek shift (with third baseman Christian Arroyo coming out), and then Diaz went back to first. Brandon Lowe came into the game, playing second, with Daniel Robertson shifting to third.

Kolarek got Belt out but allowed a single to Crawford, and Castillo came in to finish the inning.


  1. In this July 2019 file photo, Rays prospect Wander Franco is shown with the Charlotte Stone Crabs. [ALLIE GOULDING  |  Tampa Bay Times]
  2. Tampa Bay Rays pitcher Brent Honeywell, who is battling back from injury, warms up on the field with Rays pitching coach Kyle Snyder (on left) watching his progress during a player workout at Tropicana Field on Friday, Jan. 24, 2020 in St. Petersburg.  [DIRK SHADD  |  Tampa Bay Times]
  3. Tampa Bay Rays relief pitcher Nick Anderson (70) likes to live for the day, as evidenced by his lack of spring training or season accommodations before arriving in Port Charlotte. [CHRIS URSO  |  Times]
  4. In this August 2019 file photo, Tampa Bay Rays broadcaster Rich Hollenberg, left, leans in along with guest Dante Bichette, center, as fellow broadcaster Orestes Destrade, right, takes a selfie of them together during the Fox Sports Sun pregame show before the Tampa Bay Rays take on the Toronto Blue Jays at Tropicana Field. DIRK SHADD   |   Times [DIRK SHADD   |   TIMES  |  Tampa Bay Times]
  5. Charlotte Stone Crabs shortstop Wander Franco (1) practices his swing in the dugout during the game against Clearwater Threshers on Thursday, July 25, 2019 in Clearwater.  ALLIE GOULDING   |   Times
 [ALLIE GOULDING  |  Tampa Bay Times]
  6. Tampa Bay Rays pitcher Tyler Glasnow, shown earlier in camp, has been working on tweaking his delivery. [OCTAVIO JONES  |  Times]
  7. Wander Franco throws to first during the spring training game between the Detroit Tigers and the Tampa Bay Rays at Charlotte Sports Park on Thursday. [WILL VRAGOVIC  |  Tampa Bay Rays]
  8. Wander Franco taking ground balls before his first big-league spring game with the Tampa Bay Rays on Thursday, Feb. 27, 2020, with Willy Adames behind him. [MARC TOPKIN  |  Tampa Bay Times]
  9. Boston Red Sox relief pitcher Darwinzon Hernandez (63) throws after reporting for spring training baseball camp Tuesday, Feb. 11, 2020, in Fort Myers, Fla. (AP Photo/John Bazemore) [JOHN BAZEMORE  |  AP]
  10. Tim Tebow, playing then for the St. Lucie Mets in the Florida State League, has a laugh while answering questions during a news conference at Steinbrenner Field in Tampa on Aug. 10, 2017. [Tampa Bay Times]
  11. Jose Alvarado retires only one of the five batters he faces in his spring debut Wednesday. [MARC TOPKIN  |  Tampa Bay Times]
  12. Joan Steinbrenner threw out the first pitch to Yankees catcher Jorge Posada in 2008 when Legends Field was renamed in honor of her husband George. Mr. Steinbrenner passed away two years later, and Mrs. Steinbrenner died in 2018. [Times]