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Rays prospects and minor leagues: Cobb makes brief return

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Alex Cobb didn't last a whole inning, but being back on the mound is progress

As long as that elbow is pain-free, the Rays probably don't care about the line in the box score
As long as that elbow is pain-free, the Rays probably don't care about the line in the box score
Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

What is the Rays' rotation going to look like on Opening Day 2017? If trades usher in a rebuilding phase, Jacob Faria is making a pretty good case for himself right now.

Triple-A Durham Bulls (38-50)

Jacob Faria was sharp, and Durham's bats broke out in an 11-2 win over Syracuse. After Non-Rays prospect Trea Turner led off the game with a double and scored a first-inning run, Faria settled in and didn't really allow the Chiefs to threaten again. He would go on to punch out nine and allow just that run on four hits and a walk in six innings. Already holding a 2-1 lead, the Bulls piled on six more runs in the fourth, highlighted by a Jaff Decker three-run homer and Richie Shaffer RBI double. Taylor Motter doubled home two insurance runs in the eighth.

Double-A Montgomery Biscuits (8-5)

A late rally fell short in Montgomery's 4-3 loss to Mississippi. Down by two and down to their last out, the Biscuits got a double from Cade Gotta and RBI single off the bat of Jake DePew. After Braxton Lee walked, Mike Marjama singled into center field, only to see DePew get thrown out for the final out of the game. Chih-Wei Hu allowed four runs on 11 hits in 6 1/3 innings.

Class-A Advanced Charlotte Stone Crabs (7-6)

Alex Cobb made his long-awaited return to the field in Charlotte's 7-2 loss to Bradenton. Cobb, who hasn't pitched in a game since Sept. 28, 2014 due to Tommy John surgery, struggled early. He recorded the second out of the first after walking two of the first three batters, but a pair of hits to score three runs knocked him out quickly. Only eight of his 21 pitches were strikes. The Marauders scored three more against Nick Sawyer in the second and bottled up the Stone Crabs offense until two ninth-inning runs.

Class-A Bowling Green Hot Rods (6-7)

Bowling Green was postponed.

Short-Season Hudson Valley Renegades (9-11)

A strong outing from Eduar Lopez lifted Hudson Valley to a 3-0 win over Staten Island. Acquired in last season's David DeJesus trade, Lopez tossed six scoreless innings, allowing just four hits and a walk with four strikeouts. Elias Torres and Joe Serrapica combined to throw the final three innings. The Renegades got the only run they needed in the first inning when Jake Fraley and Garrett Whitley singled and moved up on a wild pitch before Nathaniel Lowe's sacrifice fly.

Rookie Princeton Rays (6-7)

Princeton was postponed.

Rookie Gulf Coast League Rays (1-9)

The GCL Rays presumably tried to win their second game, but they failed with a 4-2 loss to the GCL Twins. Starter Eduard Rosillo was sharp with six strikeouts in five scoreless innings, but he got no run support while he was in the game. The GCL Twins eventually tallied four runs against Matt Vogel before the GCL Rays offense woke up and accomplished something with an unearned run in each of the last two innings. Granden Goetzman was 0-for-4.

CLICK HERE FOR ALL BOX SCORES

Notable Performances

Triple-A

OF Jaff Decker: 2-for-4, 2 R, 1 HR, 3 RBI, 1 BB, 1 K
SS Taylor Motter: 2-for-4, 1 R, 2 2B, 3 RBI, 1 BB, 1 K, 1 SB
3B Richie Shaffer: 1-for-4, 1 R, 1 2B, 1 RBI, 1 BB, 1 K, 1 SB
C Luke Maile: 2-for-3, 2 R, 2 2B, 1 RBI, 1 BB
2B Jake Hager: 1-for-4, 1 R, 1 RBI, 2 K

RHP Jacob Faria: 6 IP, 4 H, 1 ER, 1 BB, 9 K

Double-A

C Mike Marjama: 3-for-4, 1 BB, 1 K
SS Willy Adames: 2-for-3, 1 BB
OF Jake Bauers: 0-for-4, 1 K
1B Casey Gillaspie: 0-for-4, 3 K

RHP Chih-Wei Hu: 6 1/3 IP, 11 H, 4 ER, 1 BB, 3 K

Class A-Advanced

OF Joe McCarthy: 1-for-4, 1 3B, 1 K
OF Justin Williams: 1-for-4, 1 R, 1 K
OF Thomas Milone: 0-for-3, 1 RBI, 1 K

RHP Alex Cobb: 2/3 IP, 2 H, 3 ER, 2 BB, 0 K
RHP Nick Sawyer: 1 1/3 IP, 3 H, 3 R (2 ER), 1 BB, 0 K
RHP Benton Moss: 5 1/3 IP, 6 H, 1 ER, 2 BB, 7 K

Short-season

OF Ryan Boldt: 1-for-4
OF Jake Fraley: 1-for-5, 1 R
OF Garrett Whitley: 1-for-4

RHP Eduar Lopez: 6 IP, 4 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 4 K

Rookie (GCL Rays)

OF Jesus Sanchez: 1-for-4
OF Granden Goetzman: 0-for-4, 1 R, 2 K
3B Joshua Lowe: 0-for-4, 1 K

RHP Eduard Rosillo: 5 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 2 BB, 6 K
RHP Matt Vogel: 1 1/3 IP, 3 H, 4 R (3 ER), 3 BB, 2 K

Today's games (All probables courtesy milb.com)

Durham v. Pawtucket 7:05 PM ET (MiLB.TV, radio stream)
Eddie Gamboa (3-2, 2.84) v. Aaron Wilkerson (4-2, 2.44)

Montgomery @ Mississippi 8 PM ET (MiLB.TV, radio stream)
Chris Kirsch (4-3, 3.84) v. Lucas Sims (0-2, 3.28)

Charlotte v. Palm Beach 6:35 PM ET (radio stream)
Henry Centeno (2-2, 2.52) v. Matt Pearce (7-5, 2.58)

Bowling Green v. Lake County 5:15 PM ET (radio stream)
TBA v. TBA
TBA v. TBA

Both games will be seven innings

Hudson Valley is off

Princeton v. Pulaski 7 PM ET (radio stream)
TBA v. TBA
TBA v. TBA

Both games will be seven innings

GCL Rays v. GCL Twins 12 PM

*Listed as TBA on milb.com

Scouting the opposition

Pawtucket Red Sox
45-42, 5th in IL North
Offense: 337 R (8th) .694 OPS (7th)
Pitching: 3.35 ERA (4th) 1.26 WHIP (5th)
Top 30 Prospects: LHP Brian Johnson (6), 1B Sam Travis (7), SS Deven Marrero (8), RHP Pat Light (11), RHP Noe Ramirez (26)

Mississippi Braves
7-6, 1st in SL South
Offense: 286 R (10th) .653 OPS (10th)
Pitching: 3.27 ERA (1st) 1.29 WHIP (4th)
Top 30 Prospects: LHP Sean Newcomb (1), SS Ozzie Albies (4), RHP Lucas Sims (11), RHP OF Dustin Peterson (20), RHP Jason Hursh (21), 2B Johan Camargo (25), RHP Andrew Thurman (28), RHP Rob Whalen (29), SS Dansby Swanson

Palm Beach Cardinals
5-9, 6th in FSL South
Offense: 278 R (11th) .614 OPS (11th)
Pitching: 3.33 ERA (5th) 1.29 WHIP (8th)
Top 30 Prospects: RHP Jack Flaherty (3), LHP Austin Gomber (14), SS Oscar Mercado (26)

Lake County Captains (Cleveland)
7-6, 3rd in MWL East
Offense: 373 R (3rd) .708 OPS (3rd)
Pitching: 3.77 ERA (13th) 1.26 WHIP (6th)
Top 30 Prospects: IF Willi Castro (26)

Pulaski Yankees
8-5, T-1st in AL East
Offense: 83 R (1st) .848 OPS (1st)
Pitching: 4.95 ERA (8th) 1.47 WHIP (9th)
Top 30 Prospects: SS Wilkerman Garcia (9), LHP Jeff Degano (23), SS Dermis Garcia (31)

GCL Twins
6-5, 3rd in GCL South
Offense: 18 R (17th) .541 OPS (17th)
Pitching: 2.81 ERA (4th) 1.21 WHIP (4th)
Top 30 Prospects: RHP Huascar Ynoa (25), C Ben Rortvedt, SS Jose Miranda, OF Akil Baddoo