1. Rays

Rays journal: Erasmo Ramirez ready to start a day after closing game

The Rays’ Erasmo Ramirez throws 12 pitches in the 15th inning against the Twins to earn the save then says after the game that he’s ready to make his scheduled start against the Rangers: “My arm feels good.”
Published May 29, 2017

MINNEAPOLIS — RHP Erasmo Ramirez was on the mound to finish Sunday's 15-inning marathon win over the Twins and will start tonight's game against the Rangers.

The Rays turned to Ramirez to pitch the 15th inning after using six other relievers, but because he threw only 12 pitches to get the final three outs — and the save — they will let him take his scheduled turn in the rotation tonight.

"My arm feels good," Ramirez said. "I'm glad the inning was quick. I executed every pitch, and that gave me the chance to not just feel it that much. I told (manager Kevin) Cash my arm feels good just in case you want to continue with the plans. I want to start for sure."

"He should be fine," Cash said. "Erasmo, we always talk about how resilient he is."

Though the Rays used six of their seven relievers — sparing only rookie LHP Jose Alvarado, who needed a day off — and three threw 30-plus pitches (Tommy Hunter, Danny Farquhar, Alex Colome), Cash said they don't plan to make a move to add a fresh arm.

One key is that RHP Chase Whitley, who can work multiple innings, threw only 19 pitches in one inning and RHP Ryne Stanek only 10. And Alvarado will be available.

Big numbers of the day

6:26 Time of game, second longest in Rays history; 6:54 on Sept. 20, 2013, a 5-4, 18-inning win over Orioles. Also longest in Target Field history.

15 Innings, matching most for a road game in franchise history; July 20, 2012, 4-3 loss at Oakland.

553 Total pitches thrown; 264 by Rays.

18, 17 Hits, strikeouts for the Rays batters.

Kiermaier's eventful day

CF Kevin Kiermaier made one incredibly good play in the eighth, running a long way to run down Jorge Polanco's drive to center and keep the Twins to a sacrifice fly and two runs in the inning. And he made one incredibly bad one in the 14th, breaking back then charging in and botching a basket catch attempt on Max Kepler's shallow fly that led to the Twins' tying run. "I was playing a little deeper than I should have, took a bad break on the ball and went back, and it was one of those things where I didn't get a good read on it and tried to make up for it and get in there quick thinking I'm going to have to dive, and that's why I chose to try and catch the ball (like that) rather than up in my face and I paid for it," Kiermaier said. "We could have ended the game right there, so I was really upset with myself right there."

More double trouble

Player rep RHP Chris Archer isn't the only Ray unhappy with the decision — made last season — to play a June 10 doubleheader at the Trop. Archer said the position players liked the idea since they in return got June 12 off, but 1B Logan Morrison said that wasn't unanimous. "I was not there for that (talk) and that's asinine," he said. "It gives you a day off your feet, but you get two days in one day, so no thanks. I'll take the rest in between." Overall, Morrison said doubleheaders "are terrible, and they're not healthy, especially when they're on turf. So that's not smart. … I don't understand it at all."

Medical matters

Today is something of a big day in Port Charlotte for a quartet of Rays working back from injury: RHP Brad Boxberger (flexor) will throw live BP to 2B Brad Miller (abdominal strain) and SS Matt Duffy (left heel) with Wilson Ramos (right knee surgery) catching. Ramos, Miller and Duffy — still slowed by the bruised big toe he fouled a ball off May 20 — may get at-bats in an extended spring game Tuesday. … Triple-A Durham RHP Jake Faria is not expected to miss his next start after being hit on the left calf by a line drive Saturday and leaving after four innings, sustaining only a bruise.


  1. The Rays posted this  message of appreciation on their Twitter account. RAYS BASEBALL  |  Twitter
    An ad in the Tampa Bay Times from the team and Twitter messages from players cap the season that included playoffs for the first time since 2013.
  2. Tampa Bay Rays leftfielder Tommy Pham (29) takes a moment in the dugout after the Rays' 6-2 loss to the Houston Astros in Game 1 of the American League Division Series. DIRK SHADD  |  Times
    Contract terms for every player currently on Tampa Bay’s roster.
  3. The Yankees' Gleyber Torres hits a home run off Astros starting pitcher Zack Greinke during the sixth inning in Game 1 of the American League Championship Series on Saturday, Oct. 12, 2019. SUE OGROCKI  |  AP
    The 22-year-old homers and has five RBIs, the youngest AL player to drive in that many in a postseason game in major-league history.
  4. Tampa Bay Rays centerfielder Kevin Kiermaier (39), right, and shortstop Willy Adames (1) celebrate the Rays 10-3 win over the Houston Astros in Game 3 of the American League Division Series at Tropicana Field. DOUGLAS R. CLIFFORD  |  Times
    Rays Tales: Underdogs really do almost “shock the world,” and Kevin Cash deserves serious American League manager of the year consideration.
  5. Nationals starter Anibal Sanchez pitches during the eighth inning of Game 1 of the NL Championship Series against the Cardinals on Friday, Oct. 11, 2019. MARK HUMPHREY  |  AP
    Starter Anibal Sanchez has a no-hitter through 7 2/3 innings before giving up a clean single to center.
  6. Rays catcher Travis d'Arnaud and starting pitcher Tyler Glasnow walk back to the dugout after the Astros score four runs in the first inning of Game 5 of the American League Division Series on Thursday, Oct. 10, 2019. DIRK SHADD  |  Times
    Manager Kevin Cash says that wasn’t the main problem for the four-run first inning in Game 5 of the ALDS. It was the Astros’ hitters.
  7. The Tampa Bay Rays grounds crew works to remove the ALDS playoff logo along the first base line on the field at Tropicana Field on Friday. DIRK SHADD  |  Tampa Bay Times
    That’s what the team stresses as it faces an offseason with roster flexibility.
  8. Tampa Bay Rays manager Kevin Cash, on left, along with Erik Neander, center, senior vice president of baseball operations and general manager, and Chaim Bloom, senior vice president of baseball operations, address the media during a news conference at Tropicana Field on Friday. DIRK SHADD  |  Tampa Bay Times
    John Romano: And while they’re at it, find a consistent closer and a bat with some pop.
  9. Houston Astros players celebrate their 6-1 win over the Tampa Bay Rays in Game 5 of the American League Division Series Thursday, Oct. 10, 2019 in Houston. DIRK SHADD  |  Times
    Preparing for Rays steady steam of relievers was a significant challenge for Houston’s hitters.
  10. Tampa Bay Rays starting pitcher Tyler Glasnow (20) reacts after giving up a hit to Houston Astros center fielder George Springer (4) in the first inning in Game 5 of the American League Division Series Thursday, Oct. 10, 2019 in Houston. DIRK SHADD  |  Times
    Rays Journal: Did the Astros know what was coming during their four-run, first-inning explosion?