With Spring Training coming to an end, the Rays final roster is falling into place. Yesterday, Brandon Guyer learned that he would be on the Opening Day roster for the first time in his career. According to Bill Chastain of MLB.com, Guyer couldn’t hide his smile when talking to the media, telling reporters, "I'm really excited for the opportunity. I've worked my whole life to try and make an Opening Day roster and be up here. Now the hard work starts. I have to keep grinding and doing everything I can to help the team win."
The only remaining decision for the Opening Day roster is for the final two bullpen positions. Brandon Gomes, Josh Lueke and Juan Carlos Oveido are the three candidates, and given Oviedo’s delay in reporting to camp due to visa issues, it seems like Gomes and Lueke are likely to both make the roster with Oviedo sent to the disabled list. But hold your horses, could the Rays be involved in trade talks with another team this late in the spring?
But bullpen is not set, Maddon said, that it's not automatic Gomes and Lueke are on. Something else could be in play.— Marc Topkin (@TBTimes_Rays) March 25, 2014
Mark Lowe was informed yesterday that he would not break camp with the team, as were Jayson Nix and Wilson Betemit. Joe Maddon mentioned that if the veterans do not sign on with any other teams, he would like for them to remain with the Rays organization in the minor leagues.
David DeJesus wrote a guest blog for MLB.com, detailing his favorite Opening Day, which happened to be in 2005 against the Detroit Tigers. This particular Opening Day was the first of DeJesus’ career in MLB when he played for the Royals. DeJesus wrote, "I remember feeling that nervous energy you sometimes get before games. I don't get that as much these days, but I remember that day having that feeling of, ‘Man, this is what I've worked for.’" He also talked about the excitement for this season, saying that the players on the Rays feel like they have a shot to get to the World Series this year.
A representative of 4Licensing, the manufacturers of the IsoBlox protective caps for pitchers, stopped by the Rays camp yesterday. This visit comes just a few days after Alex Cobb had spoken out about not seeing a prototype yet for the hats after watching teammate Matt Moore get hit in the mouth with a comebacker on Sunday. After finally getting to see the cap yesterday, Cobb described it to reporters as awkward. "It's basically big, thick pads on your head that stick out maybe a full inch or a little more and it's heavy. And it's hot. It just isn't practical."
Chris Archer stopped by the Boys and Girls Club of Charlotte County yesterday to deliver the $15,000 worth of equipment that he, the Rays and Good Sports donated to the group.
#Rays Peralta says suspended RHP Alex Colome is "frustrated," that he "doesnt know what was the deal, why he tested positive.''— Marc Topkin (@TBTimes_Rays) March 25, 2014
- This is what happens when you try and strike out BJ Upton on three straight pitches.
- Richard Justice of MLB.com talks about the AL East remaining the powerhouse division around the league.
- Hardball Times: Foundations of the Dollars-per-WAR Evaluation Framework
- Alex Skillin of SB Nation takes a look at the poll results from ESPN The Magazine, which interviewed 143 MLB players about a variety of topics. One question that the players were asked was about how many players still use. One player stated, "I think the number is probably about 10%, but that's not counting Adderall as a PED. If you included guys who are using Adderall, wow, that number would be through the roof." Interesting.
-Other Florida team things: Dan Marino will be throwing out the first pitch at the Marlins Opening Night game. Also Marlins, Jeff Sullivan looks into the impossibly possible juggernaut they are building.
- Ron Gardenhire and a few of his players pulled a prank on pitcher Mike Pelfrey. Pelfrey, a Wichita State alum, thought that he was giving a peptalk to the Shockers basketball team before their March Madness matchup.
Five days until MORE BAT FLIPS.