Chris Archer

Today was the first day of workouts for the Rays’ full squad and that included live batting practice where things got interesting between Chris Archer and perennial prospect Tim Beckham.

During the BP session, Beckham hit a home run off of Archer. As he tends to do, Archer reacted in his typical animated fashion, only this was batting practice and not the middle of August against the Red Sox.

So why was Archer so animated? Well, we need to take a step back for some background.

Beckham and Archer came up through system together and have known each other for a long time. That is to say, they are apparently close. They also like to trashtalk each other about facing each other in BP.

According to Archer, Beckham texted him at 5 a.m. Friday morning, writing, “You better come with it today because I’m going deep.”

That’s a bold statement for the first official batting practice of the season and against one of the best pitchers in baseball.

Fast forward a few hours and Beckham did go deep. While we don’t have video, Archer’s reaction was caught by team photographer Will Vragovic.

And here is Beckham watching the ball fly away.

“He actually texted me at 5 a.m. and said, ‘You better come with it today because I’m going deep,'” Archer later said. “So that’s why I was so animated, because he went deep. He called it.”

Well, it turns out the pair weren’t done and Archer exacted a bit of revenge.

“I shot him a text this morning, let him know I was coming for him,” Beckham said. “It’s all fun and games, man. You see some pitches, do something productive and get some momentum coming into the spring. … [It’s] very rare [to homer off Archer]. … Just so happens that I ran into one, got one on the barrel and it felt good. Next at bat he went in on me, he brushed me back a little bit.”

Trash talking and brush-back pitches and they haven’t played a single spring training game yet. You can call the Rays a lot of things, but one thing they will never be is boring.



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