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Charlie Morton excellent in debut

The veteran pitcher picked up a strikeout during his first time on the mound in a Rays uniform

Tampa Bay Rays Photo Day Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images

Charlie Morton has made his first appearance in a Rays uniform as he started today’s game against the Baltimore Orioles.

After the Rays offense put up four runs against former Rays hurler, Alex Cobb, Charlie Morton came to make in his Rays spring training debut. Morton worked a perfect first inning and a third, retiring all four hitters he faced, picking up a strikeout sandwiched between two relatively weakly hit balls. He retired the lone hitter he faced in the 2nd inning on an infield pop out.

Morton had been chomping at the bit to make his first appearance this spring, choosing to pitch against the Orioles rather than play in a simulated game.

“I wanted to get the uniform on, pitch in front of a crowd a little bit, that’s it,’’ Morton said. “We’re in March, (regular-season) games start in March and I want to get going.’

The Rays signed Morton in December to a two year deal that guarantees Morton $30M, with an option for a third season that could pay Morton up to $15M. Morton will make a franchise record, $15M during the 2019 season.

Morton will slide into the Rays starting rotation, between the reigning American League Cy Young, Blake Snell, and then Tyler Glasnow, giving the Rays one of the best front three in all of baseball.