Rays Update: Opening Day Roster Set

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The Rays 25-man Opening Day roster is officially set for today’s game. Josh Lueke has been called up to replace Kyle Farnsworth, who joins B.J. Upton, Sam Fuld and Robinson Chirinos on the DL.

Pitchers (12):
RH Burke Badenhop
RH Wade Davis
RH Jeremy Hellickson
LH J.P. Howell
RH Josh Lueke
LH Jake McGee
LH Matt Moore
RH Jeff Niemann
RH Joel Peralta
LH David Price
RH Fernando Rodney
RH James Shields

Catchers (2):
Jose Lobaton
Jose Molina

Infielders (7):
Reid Brignac
Elliot Johnson
Jeff Keppinger
Evan Longoria
Carlos Peña
Sean Rodriguez
Luke Scott

Outfielders (4):
Desmond Jennings
Matt Joyce
Stephen Vogt
Ben Zobrist

The latest Rays news and notes:

  • The Rays claimed left-handed reliever John Gaub off waivers yesterday, replacing Matt Bush’s spot on the 40-man roster. Gaub, who went 4-4 with a 3.42 ERA and 7 saves for Triple-A Iowa last season, won’t start the season on the 25-man roster.
  • We know how Joe Maddon loves to platoon, be he still surprised most of us yesterday when he set the lineup for today’s game. Elliot Johnson and Jeff Keppinger will start, while Luke Scott is left out of the lineup. With southpaw C.C. Sabathia starting, we see a lineup with only two lefties today (Matt Joyce and Carlos Pena). Keppinger, who has absolutely no power but has good number against Sabathia, will bat in the cleanup spot. Elliot Johnson also has pretty good numbers against C.C., which is why he’s batting in the sixth hole. It’s still a little bit of a head-scratcher, but we’ll see how Maddon’s experiment works this afternoon. Here’s the full lineup below:
    1. Desmond Jennings, CF
    2. Ben Zobrist, RF
    3. Evan Longoria, 3B
    4. Jeff Keppinger, DH
    5. Sean Rodriguez, SS
    6. Elliot Johnson, 2B
    7. Carlos Pena, 1B
    8. Jose Molina, C
    9. Matt Joyce, LF
  • Another season of Meet the Rays is underway at TampaBay.com. Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times interviews the Rays players one by one. Click here for a trailer.
  • Fifty ESPN MLB experts made their preseason predictions on Wednesday, and it seems like they’re giving the Rays plenty of respect. Here’s a breakdown of it over at RaysIndex.com.
  • MLB.com’s Jim Hawkins writes an interesting piece on Stephen Vogt’s ‘scenic route’ to the Major Leagues.

2 Comments

Good luck to the Rays this season! Great start to the season over the Yanks. I’m still amazed to see so many players on the roster that played minor league ball here in Michigan!
–Mike

A great start indeed, it’s great to have Carlos Pena back with the team. And ya it is incredible how many Michigan minor leaguers made the Opening Day roster this season.

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