Player News - Rays

Date: Team: Pos:

Matt Andriese was tagged for six runs in 4 1/3 innings by the Yankees on Sunday.

Andriese entered camp as the favorite to open up as the Rays' fifth starter, but he's done nothing to lay claim to the role. He even walked four batters today, which was an oddity from a guy who walked a total of 25 in 127 2/3 innings in the majors last year. Andriese's struggles are likely good news for Blake Snell, who has had similar issues this spring but was on stronger ground for the fourth spot going in.
Mar 26 - 4:50 PM

Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times expects Corey Dickerson to begin the season as the Rays' leadoff hitter against right-handers.

Topkin projects Kevin Kiermaier to remain in the No. 2 spot and Dickerson to precede him. It's obviously very favorable news for Dickerson for fantasy purposes, as he slugged 22 home runs against righties last season and is a career .288/.335/.552 hitter against them. Dickerson entered Grapefruit League play on Sunday batting .367/.392/.633 with four longballs this spring.
Mar 26 - 3:49 PM

Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times believes that Mallex Smith not only will make the Rays' Opening Day roster but will likely be in the lineup for the season opener.

Colby Rasmus (hip) isn't ready to play the outfield yet and will begin the season on the disabled list, and Topkin writes that Smith will get "a chance to show what he can do and how dynamic a duo he can form with (Kevin) Kiermaier." Smith probably isn't guaranteed anything beyond fill-in status until Rasmus is ready, but he could certainly play his way into a regular role. He has the potential to be a difference-maker in fantasy leagues with his speed if he sees regular at-bats.
Mar 26 - 3:42 PM

Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times reports that Jesus Sucre is likely to make the Rays' Opening Day roster.

He and new addition Derek Norris will form the Rays' catching duo until Wilson Ramos (knee) is ready. Curt Casali or Luke Maile will be the odd men out, with Casali possibly being trade bait. Sucre is a defense-first catcher who probably won't play a ton, so he can be ignored in fantasy leagues.
Mar 26 - 3:37 PM

Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times thinks the Rays will attempt to trade Curt Casali.

They could also consider dealing Luke Maile following the signing of Derek Norris, but it appears Casali is more likely to be dealt. Jesus Sucre is expected to open the season along with Norris as the team's two catchers until Wilson Ramos (knee) is ready. Casali has hit 18 homers over 369 plate appearances over the last two seasons but has batted just .202/.282/.416 overall.
Mar 26 - 3:33 PM

Steven Souza (blister) played only defense in a minor league game Sunday.

Souza has dealt with a blister for a few days and isn't ready to swing a bat in a game yet. He'll probably be fine by Opening Day but obviously doesn't have a ton of time.
Mar 26 - 1:19 PM

Rays placed RHP Kevin Gadea on the 60-day disabled list with right elbow tendinitis.

The Rays had been set to offer the Rule 5 pick back to the Mariners, but instead they'll stash him on the DL. The move clears a spot on the 40-man roster for the addition of Derek Norris.
Mar 26 - 1:10 PM

Rays signed C Derek Norris to a one-year, $1.2 million contract.

The deal was reported Friday and is now official. Norris is also owed another $700,000 from the Nationals and will be under team control through 2018. The veteran catcher is coming off an awful season that saw him bat just .186/.255/.328, and he's also been dinged for his defense. However, the Rays are viewing him as an upgrade over Jesus Sucre, Curt Casali and Luke Maile until Wilson Ramos (knee) is ready.
Mar 26 - 1:08 PM

Tim Beckham was scratched from Sunday's lineup due to an irritated hip flexor.

Beckham suffered the injury on Saturday. That he was originally in the lineup suggests it's a day-to-day thing. If healthy, Beckham is slated to be the Rays' Opening Day shortstop with Matt Duffy (heel) still sidelined.
Mar 26 - 11:10 AM

Alex Cobb was scratched from a scheduled start in a minor league game Sunday due to lower back tightness.

It's obviously not ideal this close to Opening Day, although Cobb doesn't think it will affect his ability to start the third game of the season as scheduled. Cobb holds a 3.95 ERA over four starts this spring.
Mar 26 - 11:08 AM

Corey Dickerson went 1-for-3 with a solo home run in Saturday's loss to the Red Sox.

It was his fourth homer of the spring. He owns a .367 batting average in 49 at-bats. He needs a strong Grapefruit League campaign to cement his role as an everyday player for the Rays. He hit .245/.293/.469 with 24 home runs and 70 RBI in 148 games in 2016.
Mar 25 - 6:17 PM

Blake Snell was hit with four earned run in 4 2/3 innings during a loss to the Red Sox on Saturday.

He gave up six hits and one walk while fanning three. The big blow was a three-run jack by Pablo Sandoval. Snell has struggled this spring, limping along with a 6.16 ERA after 19 innings of work. As a rookie last year he put up a 3.54 ERA in 19 starts, logging 98 strikeouts and 51 walks in 89 innings. There is no quarantee he will start the season in the majors.
Mar 25 - 6:13 PM

Colby Rasmus (hip) said Saturday that he expects to open the season on the disabled list.

The veteran outfielder, who has been serving as the designated hitter in Grapefruit League play, said he isn't yet comfortable playing in the outfield and that manager Kevin Cash said that's a prerequisite for making the active roster. Even if he starts the season on the DL, it should only be for a week or two.
Mar 25 - 9:26 AM

Rays manager Kevin Cash said Friday that Matt Duffy's recent setback may not be with his surgically-repaired left heel.

Instead, it may simply be that the ankle and calf around the area need more strengthening. While it doesn't help to cut down his timeline for a return, it would be an encouraging development if there was no new issue with his heel. Tim Beckham is expected to hold down the shortstop position until Duffy is ready.
Mar 25 - 8:54 AM

Erasmo Ramirez pitched four innings and allowed three runs -- one earned -- in a loss to the Pirates on Friday.

Although he missed the first half of the spring with a hamstring injury, the Rays are still stretching Ramirez out as a rotation candidate. It's an encouraging development for him, though he has been mentioned as a trade candidate recently.
Mar 24 - 5:11 PM


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