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Rays send Mike Brosseau back down to Triple A, for now

The rookie infielder heads to Durham, though maybe not for long. Jose De Leon is called back up to add a 13th pitcher.
The Rays' Mike Brosseau celebrates with teammate Travis d'Arnaud after Brosseau delivers a walkoff hit in the 13th inning against the Tigers on Aug. 17, 2019. ["OCTAVIO JONES   |   TIMES"  |  Tampa Bay Times]
The Rays' Mike Brosseau celebrates with teammate Travis d'Arnaud after Brosseau delivers a walkoff hit in the 13th inning against the Tigers on Aug. 17, 2019. ["OCTAVIO JONES | TIMES" | Tampa Bay Times]
Published Aug. 29, 2019
Updated Aug. 29, 2019

HOUSTON — Rookie infielder Mike Brosseau has done a lot to help the Rays since being called up in June, then back again in early July to stay for a while. That includes taking three turns pitching in blowouts, most recently working two innings Tuesday against the Astros.

But with infielder Joey Wendle back from the injured list, and the bullpen needing someone to cover multiple innings, Brosseau was sent down Wednesday, and Jose De Leon was called back up to add a 13th pitcher.

”We’ve got to protect our pitchers,’’ Cash said. Especially since they have opener/bulk-innings-pitcher setups the next three games, “where we’re trying to get creative and we’re going to be using a lot pitchers throughout that, so we want to keep everybody as fresh as possible.’’

De Leon pitched for the Rays on Aug. 14 in San Diego, his first action in the majors in more than two years as he recovered from Tommy John surgery, and twice since for Triple-A Durham. He said he will be more comfortable emotionally this time around.

Brosseau will be back but has to spend the requisite 10 days in the minors, even though that carries past Sunday’s roster expansion.

Kiermaier out of lineup again

Centerfielder Kevin Kiermaier wasn’t well enough to be in the lineup Wednesday, still feeling the effects of the bruised rib cage he sustained crashing into the outfield wall Sunday in Baltimore. “Kind of unfortunate,’’ Cash said. “KK is wanting to get out there badly. We don’t want to put him in jeopardy with anything. I think there’s some uncertainty that the pain hasn’t subsided.’’ Cash said there are no plans for additional medical testing, and they hope Kiermaier can return today.


• Andrew Kittredge will be the opener on Thursday, with Trevor Richards slated to work the bulk of the innings.

• Minor-leaguers headed to the Arizona Fall League’s Salt River Rafters include pitchers Shane Baz, Drew Strotman, Alex Valverde, with one more to be added; catcher Ronaldo Hernandez; infielder Taylor Walls; and outfielder Josh Lowe. Rookie-level Princeton pitching coach Jim Paduch will be on the staff.

• Charlie Morton said the primary reason for his rough outing Tuesday was location, not that he was back for the first time in Houston, where he was cheered and saluted with an emotional video tribute that caused him to stop his warmups. He said he was throwing his pitches, specifically too many, in the same spots and not elevating his fastball or getting hitters to chase his curve. “I don’t know if I did a great job mixing,’’ he said.

• Tuesday’s 15-1 loss was the Rays’ most lopsided since 17-1 at Baltimore on May 13, 2018. It also was the first time they had allowed multiple runs in four straight innings since April 15, 2015.

• Field coordinator Craig Albernaz joined the Rays for the series in Houston.


  1. Jose Alvarado retires only one of the five batters he faces in his spring debut Wednesday. [MARC TOPKIN  |  Tampa Bay Times]
  2. 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]
  3. Wander Franco  is slated to play in his first big-league exhibition games, coming off the bench on Thursday in Port Charlotte, then starting Friday in West Palm Beach against the Nationals. [ALLIE GOULDING  |  Tampa Bay Times]
  4. Philadelphia Phillies manager Joe Girardi watches pitchers in the bullpen during a spring training baseball workout Friday, Feb. 14, 2020, in Clearwater, Fla. [FRANK FRANKLIN II  |  AP]
  5. The Rays are hoping the rain holds off and they can play today in Port Charlotte. [MARC TOPKIN  |  Tampa Bay Times]
  6. Lakers general manager Rob Pelinka speaks during a celebration of life for Kobe Bryant and his daughter Gianna on Monday, Feb. 24, 2020, in Los Angeles. [MARCIO JOSE SANCHEZ  |  AP]
  7. Tampa Bay Rays starting pitcher Charlie Morton (50) works in the first inning of a spring training baseball game against the Baltimore Orioles Tuesday  in Sarasota. [JOHN BAZEMORE  |  AP]
  8. The wildfire burned over 220 acres, but Charlotte County officials said no homes were lost. [Charlotte County Fire and EMS]
  9. Tampa Bay Rays starting pitcher Charlie Morton (50) pitches at the top of the first inning against Cleveland Indians on Sunday, Sept. 01, 2019 at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg.   [Times]
  10. Imagine what Tropicana Field would be like if fans showed up every day the way they did for Game 4 of the American League Division Series against the Astros last October. [DOUGLAS R. CLIFFORD  |  Times]
  11. Jose Altuve and other Astros stars hear it from fans in Lakeland, who aren't shy about reminding them of the sign-signing scandal. [FRANK FRANKLIN II  |  AP]