THE GOOD: Juan Cruz. Another scoreless inning (his 5th) and it is starting to look like Cruz has one of the final 3 bullpen spots locked up…Heart of the Order. Johnny Damon, Evan Longoria and Manny Ramirez went a combined 6-7 with 2 doubles and a home run by Manny. BJ Upton also added his 2nd home run…Bullpen. In addition to Cruz’ performance, 6 relievers pitched, all of whom could be on the opening day roster. Those 6 combined for 7.1 innings, striking out 7 and walking 2. The only run came off of Andy Sonnanstine in his 2 innings of work late.
THE BAD: Rough Start. Jeremy Hellickson had already seen his spring delayed because of a hamstring issue. Now he has a blister issue. Yesterday he was pulled in the middle of the 2nd inning because of a blister on his right ring finger.
THE TELLING: To nobody’s surprise, David Price will be the Rays’ opening day starter. James Shields will start game 2…Manny Ramirez requested to make today’s trip to Jupiter (via Roger Mooney). That is a 150 mile trip that future Hall-of-Famers typically won’t make…Wade Davis has been scratched from his scheduled start today due to the flu. Cory Wade will start.
THE JUNKYARD DOGS WEBTOPIA…
- Joe Maddon says Jeremy Hellickson will be fine for his next start. [TampaBay.com]
- BJ Upton and Justin Upton are featured in a new New Era ad campaign. [The Heater]
- The two candidates for Mayor in Tampa were asked about the Rays stadium issue. Both want the Rays in Tampa, which of course pissed off Bill Foster, the mayor of St. Pete. [WTSP.com]
Here is hoping we see Dirk Hayhurst again this season. Dave did not reject this Garfoose autograph when the Rays played at Al Lang